Second Half Momentum Falls Short for No. 12 Field Hockey in 2-1 Loss to No. 4 Virginia



ALBANY, N.Y.- The University at Albany field hockey team (10-2, 1-0 AE) dropped a close game to No. 4 Virginia by the score of 2-1 at Alumni Field on Sunday afternoon.

“We got our confidence up with the win against Maine yesterday,” said head coach Phil Sykes. “Both teams were definitely tired after playing yesterday, but we were particularly sluggish in the first half. We kept our composure and played a good second half. We had our opportunities and it was a great team effort.”

Virginia got on the board first, when Riley Tata tipped a pass from Chloe Pendlebury to give the Cavaliers a 1-0 lead in the 20th minute. The Cavaliers also converted on a late penalty corner in the first half, with Kelsey LeBlanc converting on the opportunity as time expired in the opening 35 minutes.

The Great Danes increased their pressure on the Cavalier end in the second half, nearly converting on two penalty corners early on.

UAlbany totaled four shots and two penalty corners in the opening five minutes of the second half, and continued to keep play in Virginia territory. Echo Bretz finally found the back of the cage for the Great Danes on a tipped penalty corner play from Daphne Voormolen and Corrine McConville.

Play got more physical after UAlbany closed the scoring gap, with Virginia picking up four cards in the closing 15 minutes of regulation. Despite playing down two players, the Cavaliers back line held strong to earn the 2-1 win.

The Great Danes out-shot Virginia 14-9 and won the penalty corner battle 5-3.

UAlbany looks to get back in the win column on Saturday, Oct. 12 against America East opponent Vermont at 2 p.m.