Kathleen Helman

#22 Field Hockey Falls vs. #6 Harvard 2-1 in OT

UAlbany Sports Information   09-06-2019

Score: #6 Harvard 2, #22 UAlbany 1 (OT)

 

Location: Alumni Turf in Albany, N.Y.

 

Records: UAlbany (1-2); Harvard (1-0)

 

Short story: #22 UAlbany falls in overtime to #6 Harvard 2-1 in the 2019 home opener despite nine saves from goalkeeper Melissa Nealon.

 

Key stats

 

  • Melissa Nealon made nine saves, including six in the second half
  • Freshman Lillian Hickey scored her first career goal
  • Harvard outshot UAlbany 17-5, including 8-1 in the third quarter
  • Harvard drew seven penalty corners to UAlbany’s three

 

Coach Sykes: “It’s a good test when you play a really good team, and Harvard was a potential Final Four team last year.  They’re very sharp and well-coached.  I just told our team our strengths are really highlighted when we play a good team like that, and our weaknesses, too.  You can see late in the game they had a bit of a run, and we needed a little bit more composure, which I think will come with a few more games, to hold off that lead.  We hit a post which would have made it 2-0 to secure things a little bit, but it was a very good learning experience.”

 

Recap

 

The University at Albany field hockey team hosted #6 Harvard in its 2019 home opener Friday.  It was the Danes’ second game this season against an opponent ranked in the top-25.  On Friday, UAlbany fell in overtime to the Crimson 2-1.

 

Harvard pressed its advantage for most of the game, out-shooting UAlbany 17-5 overall.  Despite the pressure, the UAlbany defense held tough, anchored by redshirt-senior goalkeeper Melissa Nealon, who finished the game with nine saves.

 

UAlbany struck first, when Kelsey McCrudden set up freshman Lillian Hickey for Hickey’s first career goal in the second quarter that put UAlbany up 1-0.  The Great Danes held on to their lead for the remainder of the first half, and entered the break with the one-goal advantage.

 

Eight of Harvard’s 17 shots came in the third quarter, where the Crimson out-shot UAlbany by a margin of 8-1.  The Great Dane defense held tough, withstanding three consecutive penalty corner attempts from Harvard without letting up a goal.

 

Harvard broke through midway through the fourth quarter, when Rachel Greenwood found the back of the net with nine minutes remaining in regulation.  Neither team could break the tie, sending the game into overtime.

 

Harvard notched the game-winner three minutes into extra time, when Hannah Pearce connected on a setup from Casey Allen, giving the Crimson the 2-1 victory.  Six of Nealon’s saves came in the second half.

 

Up next: UAlbany visits #3 Princeton on Friday, September 13 for a 4:00 p.m. start.

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