ALBANY, N.Y.—After a 1-2 season start UAlbany Field Hockey moves to #21 in the National Field Hockey Coaches Association poll. The Great Danes move up three spots from their original pre-season ranking of number eighteen. In their two opening home games UAlbany faced Miami University and Boston College falling to both teams in extra minutes. The Great Danes earned their first win this past week against Holy Cross 5-3. Freshman Ghislaine Beerkens was the goal leader, the first two of her Great Dane career. This game also served as Melissa Nealon's first win as goalkeeper. UAlbany will next face Boston University on Friday, September 8th at 1 PM on Alumni Turf.
Score: UAlbany 5 - Holy Cross 3 Location: Worcester, Mass Records: UAlbany 1-2 Holy Cross 0-2 Short Story: Tied up 2-2 at the half, the Great Danes pulled ahead outscoring Holy Cross 3-1 in the second half. KEY STATS Camryn Dias led UAlbany in points recording two assists and a goal. Freshman Ghislaine Beerkens was the Great Danes' top scorer of the game with two goals, the firsts of her career at UAlbany. At keeper, Melissa Nealon was awarded her first career win with two saves. UAlbany outshot Holy Cross 22-7 controlling the pace of the game with six penalty corners HOW IT HAPPENED The Knights' Lauren Ineson scored the first goal of the game in the 9th minute. Freshman Katie MacCallum and junior Frederike Helmke took the lead with back-to-back goals in the 11th and 15th minute respectively. Holy Cross countered with a goal to tie the score 2-2 from a low shot ball after a pass from Emily Loprete outside the circle in the 18th minute. In the second half, Holy Cross forward, Maureen Connolly scored in the 44th minute on a ball that flew loose from the keeper. Dias scored her first goal of the season in the 49th minute, followed by two unassisted goals from Beerkens in the 58th and 66th minutes. Next up, the Great Danes will take on Boston University Friday, September 8th on Alumni Turf at 1 P.M.
ALBANY, N.Y.—UAlbany Field Hockey fell to Boston College 2-1 in double overtime. "We played very well today. Our girls competed well with a very good BC team. We made a few adjustments from yesterday. Once we refine some little details we will go in a very good direction," said head coach Phil Sykes. With aggressive play from both teams, the Boston College Eagles took an early lead in the first half. Shortly after a penalty corner, the Eagles' Lucy Lytle scored in the fifth minute from an assist by Frederique Haverhals. However, the Great Danes followed closely behind. With three continuous Boston College fouls, Katie MacCullum fired back with her first career goal as a Great Dane to tie. Both teams battled back in the second half but were unable to score. Great defensive efforts were noted by captains Frederike Helmke and Anna Bottino. As the heat continued, the Eagles and Great Danes went scoreless for the first fifteen-minute overtime period. In the second overtime, Melissa Nealon came to the rescue recording a save off a penalty stroke, her second of the game. Unfortunately, it was not enough as Boston College's Caroline McGovern found the back of the goal to end the game. Boston College had more opportunities to score outshooting UAlbany 22-6. Melissa Nealon had an impressive 10 saves in the goal. UAlbany will next take the field Friday, September 1st against Holy Cross at 6 p.m. in Worcester, Mass.
ALBANY, N.Y.—The University at Albany will travel to Worcester, Massachusetts on Friday for its first road competition of the season facing Holy Cross on September 1st at 6:05 PM. LAST TIME ON THE TURF The Great Danes will take the turf looking to end its 0-2 run to start the season. Last weekend the Great Danes fell to Miami University 2-1 in overtime and Boston College 2-1 in double overtime. Dana Bozek shot the Danes' first goal of the season off of a reflected shot. Against Boston College freshman forward Katie MacCallum scored her first goal as a Great Dane tying the score to send the Danes to overtime. Meanwhile, Melissa Nealon proved herself dominate in the goal recording 10 saves against the BC Eagles, with two from penalty strokes. SCOUTING HOLY CROSS The Holy Cross Crusaders opened their 2017 season last Friday against #22 Massachusetts. The Crusaders fell 8-3. The Crusaders stuck with Massachusetts through the first half with a 3-3 tie score, but the Minutewomen added an additional five in the second half. In the Patriot League Field Hockey Preseason Poll Holy Cross was picked to finish fifth in the league receiving no first place votes. Players to watch: Senior Maureen Connolly was named to the Preseason All-Patriot League team. In 2016 she was named Second Team NFHCA All-Region, First Team All-Patriot League, and Academic All-Patriot League. The forward led the Patriot League in points (37), goals scored (15), and game-winning goals (7). Sophomore Marcia LaPlante was also named to the Preseason All-Patriot League. The 2016 freshman was named the Rookie of the Year recording the highest save percentage in the nation at .817. She was named to the Second Team NFHCA All-Region and First Team All-Patriot League.
Unable to capitalize on four penalty corners, the #18 UAlbany field hockey team fell in overtime to University of Miami 2-1. "It was a tough one today. Miami is a well coached team and their aggressiveness changed our momentum," said head coach Phil Sykes. "We played a very solid first half and were unlucky to not be up by a few more. Our team is young and it will take us a few games to mesh." UAlbany was the first to score in the 27th minute of the opening half. Dana Bozek made her way to the goal scoring with a tip from a defender's stick. The Great Danes held off the RedHawks for nearly half of the second half until Miami's Lexie Nugent scored in the 57th minute from an assist by Kirsten McNeil to tie the game. Neither team was able to score again in the rest of regulation time. Miami put pressure on the Great Danes immediately in overtime. The RedHawks scored the game-winning goal just four minutes in the extra period. Lexi Silver scored the final goal with an assist from Leonor Berlie. Melissa Nealon made four saves in the goal compared to the Miami goalie's single save. UAlbany was on attack more often than the RedHawks but was unable to capitalize. UAlbany will play again Sunday, August 27th at 1 p.m. on Alumni Turf against Boston College.
ALBANY, N.Y.-- Falling last season in the semi-finals of the America East Tournament, the UAlbany Field Hockey team resets for the 2017 season. Head coach Phil Sykes enters his 14th season with the squad along with assistant coaches Andy Thornton and Amy Nicklin. NEW DYNAMIC This year's team has the challenge of replacing a strong 2016 senior class including two All-Americans, Paula Heuser and Maxi Primus. "It is always a challenge to lose such quality players who bring so much to your team. This team is very different and our overall depth and balance is very good," said Sykes. "This preseason I have been impressed with our growth over a short time. I am excited to see what we are capable of." KEY RETURNERS Senior Leaders: Bottino and Bridell Leading the squad this season are the two seniors Anna Bottino and Kelsey Briddell. "Both are four year starters and have been a part of a lot of wins during their time. They are both captains and will be great leaders for us," said Sykes. Bottino and Briddell started all 20 games for UAlbany in 2016. Bottino recorded 16 points with five goals and six assists at forward. Meanwhile, Briddell finished with 12 points on the season with two goals and eight assists. A backup penalty corner player, Briddell took 41 corners as well. Junior Captain: Helmke Frederike Helmke returns to the Danes for her third season as the team's primary captain. In 2016 Helmke was named to the NFHCA All-Northeast Region First Team and the America East East Division All-Conference team. On the back line and a penalty stroke player, she finished with four goals, six assists and two penalty stroke goals. "Freddy is a great leader and her calm yet confident demeanor goes a long way with our team," said Phil Sykes. New Face in the Goal: Nealon From reserve to starter, redshirt sophomore Melissa Nealon will be key to UAlbany's success. Nealon appeared
ALBANY, N.Y. – The UAlbany field hockey team will enter the 2017 season ranked #18 in the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division I Preseason Poll. This is the third-straight year the Great Danes have been named to the NFHCA Preseason Poll. In 2015 and 2016 UAlbany placed spots in the top ten. This season Stanford was named 13th overall in the poll, which is the highest ranked America East team. Two other America East teams, Maine and Pacific rounded out the poll at 23 and 24 respectively. North Carolina claimed the top of the poll along with Duke and Delaware. The Great Danes begin the year this weekend, taking on Miami-OH at home on the Alumni Turf on Saturday, August 26th at 1 p.m.
ALBANY, N.Y.— Trailing first place by one point, the University at Albany has been ranked second in the East Division of the 2017 America East Field Hockey Preseason Poll. For the first time since the America East division split, Maine captured the first place spot in the East Division with three first place votes and fifteen points overall. Meanwhile, UAlbany totaled fourteen points overall with two first place votes. Following without any first place votes was New Hampshire (9 points), UMass Lowell (8 points), and Vermont (4 points). In the West Division Stanford claimed three first-place votes (9 points) and Pacific with one (six points). Ranking third was California (5 points) and then UC Davis (4 points). Last season the Great Danes fell in the semifinals of the America East Tournament to Pacific in overtime. UAlbany holds seven America East titles earning the most recent titles in 2014 and 2015. The Danes will take the field for the first time this season at home, Saturday August 26th against Miami OH at 1 PM.
Former Great Dane standout Amy Nicklin has returned to the Capital District to serve as an assistant coach for the UAlbany field hockey team starting in the 2017 season.