Celebrating 40th Anniversary, Defending Ivy Champs Announce 2012 Schedule

The Yale field hockey huddle. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
The Yale field hockey huddle. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Season Starts Aug. 31 at Fairfield; "Get a Grip" Game is Sept. 2 at Johnson Field

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The 2012 Yale field hockey season, which marks the 40th anniversary of the first varsity field hockey season at Yale, gets underway Aug. 31 at Fairfield. Seven games vs. teams that were ranked or received votes in the final 2011 national poll highlight the schedule, which was released Friday. The Bulldogs also have three games vs. teams that took part in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. Yale is coming off its first Ivy League title since 1980. In addition to the seven league games -- starting with a visit to archrival Harvard on Sept. 15 -- the Bulldogs have 10 non-league games.

This is Yale's eighth season with Pam Stuper as head coach. The Bulldogs return six starters and four All-Ivy League selections from last season, when they finished among the teams "also receiving votes" in the national poll (19 poll points, No. 23 in the country). The Bulldogs went 11-6 overall and 6-1 in the Ivy League (tied for first). The team's 34 wins in the past three seasons are the most in any three-year span in school history. The best four-year span win total is 45, from 1995-1998.

Yale's captain for 2012 is rising senior forward Maddy Sharp (San Diego, Calif.). Rising junior forward Erica Borgo (Randolph, N.J.) is the team's top returning scorer (5-17-27), followed by rising junior midfielder/back Georgia Holland (Stony Brook, N.Y.) (9-4-22). Both were first team All-Ivy League picks last season. Rising senior midfielder Mary Beth Barham (Fairfax, Va.) and rising junior goalkeeper Emily Cain (Laytonsville, Md.) were second team All-Ivy selections.

This year Yale will once again hold a season-long fundraiser for the Myotonic Dystrophy Foundation in honor of goalkeeper Ona McConnell (London, England), a rising senior who has been diagnosed with that disease. The campaign, known as "Get a Grip", launches with the first home game -- Sunday, Sept. 2 vs. Quinnipiac at Johnson Field. Further details about the "Get a Grip" game will be released shortly.

Here is a breakdown of the schedule for 2012:

  • Yale's regular-season schedule consists of 17 games. That includes seven games against Ivy League opponents (Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Penn and Princeton).
  • The regular-season schedule includes 10 non-conference games: Aug. 31 at Fairfield, Sept 2 vs. Quinnipiac, Sept. 8 vs. Hofstra, Sept. 16 at UConn, Sept. 23 vs. Sacred Heart, Sept. 30 at Syracuse, Oct. 6 at Virginia, Oct. 14 at Vermont, Oct. 21 vs. Albany and Oct. 28 vs. BU.
  • Alumnae Day is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 20 vs. Penn. That will include a celebration of the 40th anniversary of Yale's first varsity season.
  • Yale plays seven games against teams that ended last season ranked or receiving votes in the NFHCA national poll (No. 3 Syracuse, No. 5 UConn, No. 13 BU, No. 14 Albany, RV Hofstra, RV Princeton, RV Virginia).
  • The schedule includes three games against teams that took part in the 2011 NCAA tournament: UConn (advanced to semifinals), Syracuse (advanced to quarterfinals) and Princeton (eliminated in first round).
  • There are eight home games and nine road games on the regular-season schedule. Yale plays games in seven different states (Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia).
  • Yale plays its final home game of the regular season Sunday Oct. 28, hosting BU. That will be Senior Day, as the Bulldogs pay tribute to the four members of the Class of 2013: B Lexy Adams (Lancaster, Pa.), M Mary Beth Barham (Fairfax, Va.), GK Ona McConnell (London, England) and captain F Maddy Sharp (San Diego, Calif.).
  • The NCAA tournament, which includes 16 teams, begins Nov. 10-11 with first- and second-round games at campus sites. The winners of those series advance to the Final Four, which takes place at Powhatan Sports Complex in Norfolk, Va., on Nov. 16 and 18. The winner of the Ivy League participates in a play-in game for a spot in the NCAA tournament field.
  • Yale will once again offer live stats of home games on yalebulldogs.com. Road games will also be available through the host schools' websites.
  • The schedule is subject to change. Check yalebulldogs.com for updates.

2012 Yale Field Hockey Schedule

Report by Sam Rubin '95 (sam.rubin@yale.edu), Yale Sports Publicity