Landshut Adds Three Assists
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The names may have changed, but so far the results for the Yale field hockey team in 2010 have been very similar to the record-setting trends of 2009: lots of goals and wins. Freshman midfielder/back Georgia Holland scored the first two goals of her career, and junior midfielder/back Taylor Sankovich also added a pair, as the Bulldogs topped Colgate 6-0 Saturday afternoon at Johnson Field. Yale has now won nine in a row dating back to last season, outscoring its opponents 39-11 in that span.
The win over the Raiders Saturday was even more impressive considering that last year Yale squeaked past Colgate 1-0. The Bulldogs had 12 shots in that game; this time around they had 36.
"We had a very specific game plan and the team did a very good job of executing," said head coach Pam Stuper. "That allowed us to create more attacking opportunities. We stayed with what we were trying to do."
Opportunity has been the key word for Yale's revamped penalty corner unit, which produced three goals Saturday. Both of Sankovich's goals came on corners, as she has clearly taken advantage of her chance to contribute offensively so far this year. Her team-high four goals are already a career high for her.
"Julia Weiser's graduation opened up a spot [on the penalty corner unit], and Taylor has worked hard these past few years to put herself in a position to step in and score," Stuper said. "She knew her time would come."
Another player stepping up on that unit is junior midfielder Dinah Landshut. The graduation of Katie Cantore '10, who was Yale's stick stopper while setting the school single-season record for assists with 16 last season, gave Landshut the chance to take on that role. Landshut assisted on all three penalty corner goals Saturday, and with six assists already this season she could challenge Cantore's mark. Landshut has moved into a tie for sixth on Yale's career assists list with 19, matching the totals of Anne Lehman '93 and Harriet Thayer '08.
"In practice we don't just work on our main corner unit -- we also try to work on a corner unit we see evolving in the future, and players that could step in if someone gets injured," Stuper said. "Dinah backed up Katie Cantore, and even though she never had to stick stop in a game she still was ready. [Associate Head Coach] Tamara [Durante] works with those developing players on corners so that they are ready to step in and continue our success."
The third key part of the corner unit is the new inserter, freshman forward Erica Borgo, who had a pair of assists Saturday. Borgo was the Ivy League Rookie of the Week last week, and this week the competition for that honor appears to be heating up thanks to Holland's big day. Holland scored a pair of unassisted goals -- the first and last of the game for Yale -- with impressive drives through the Raider defense.
"Georgia had an outstanding game," said Stuper. "She played very well defensively and also created a lot on attack, whether it was passing or carrying the ball and isolating defenders."
Sophomore forward Maddy Sharp, celebrating her birthday, was also a key part of the Yale attack despite not having an assist or a goal to show for it. Her pressure up front caused constant problems for Colgate's defense and helped generate numerous scoring chances.
"Maddy had a good stick defensively up on the forward line, and also had some good runs down the left side and the right side," Stuper said.
And while many new names have cropped up offensively so far this year, some remain the same. Junior back Erin Carter and junior forward Mia Rosati, two of the Bulldogs' top four returning scorers from last season, got their first goals of 2010 on Saturday. For Carter it was also part of a day where she continued to anchor a Yale defense that now has two shutouts in three games.
"Carter stopped some key plays defensively," Stuper said. "And in setting up our transition to attack, she exploited the holes that were available."
The Bulldogs host UMass Sunday at 3 p.m.
Every goal Yale scores this season brings the world closer to a cure for myotonic dystrophy. Sophomore goalkeeper Ona McConnell (London, England) has been diagnosed with the disease, the most common form of muscular dystrophy. The Bulldogs are taking pledges for a season-long "Goal-a-thon" as part of their "Get a Grip" campaign to raise awareness and funds for the Myotonic Dystrophy Foundation. For more information, visit http://www.yalebulldogs.com/getagrip
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity