Oct. 16, 2008
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Yale field hockey team concludes a stretch of three straight weeks away from Johnson Field this weekend. After traveling to Dartmouth for their fourth straight game on the road Saturday (Noon, Live Stats and Pay-per-view Video on Dartmouth's website), the Bulldogs host Hofstra Sunday (2:00, GameTracker).
Yale (2-8, 0-3 Ivy League) has played five straight teams that were either ranked or receiving votes in the national poll, and the Bulldogs have played some of their best hockey during that stretch. In the last game at Johnson Field three weeks ago, Yale had the lead on Lock Haven until a pair of late goals helped the Lady Eagles avoid the upset with a 2-1 win. In their game last Sunday the Bulldogs had the lead on North Carolina, currently ranked No. 7, for nearly 42 minutes before the Tar Heels eventually pulled away.
Sophomore goalkeeper Katie Bolling (Ann Arbor, Mich.) has shown the ability to give her team a chance to win any game she plays. Bolling was named Ivy League Player of the Week after her 15-save effort against UNC. She currently leads the country in save percentage, .838, and has made 39 saves in her last three games.
Dartmouth (3-7, 2-1 Ivy League) is a relatively young team -- 13 of the 18 players on the roster are either freshmen or sophomores. Those youngsters have been tested lately: the Big Green has been involved in six straight one-goal games. Dartmouth is 3-3 in that stretch. Freshman forward Kelly Hood, the Ivy League co-Rookie of the Week last week, leads the team in scoring with five goals and an assist. Freshman goalkeeper Meagan Vakiener has a .714 save percentage and a 3.09 goals-against average.
Hofstra (7-6), which opened the season 6-1 but has gone 1-5 since, features some dangerous scorers. Forward/midfielder Charlia Warner, an All-Region pick last season, leads the team in goals and points (10-2-22). Forward/midfielder Kristin Thompson is second in scoring (6-7-19), while forward Brit Blankmeyer has contributed seven goals. Blankmeyer was an All-CAA selection last season.
The sight of Hofstra should bring back some pleasant memories for junior forward Ashley McCauley (Rye, N.Y.). Entering last season's meeting with the Pride, McCauley had not scored a goal in 17 career games; she erupted for four that day in Yale's 6-2 win. Now, McCauley has 21 career goals, placing her ninth on Yale's career list.
report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity