STORRS, Conn. – A day after posting its best offensive output in five years (seven goals in a win at Dartmouth), the Yale field hockey team ran into a red-hot UConn team that had allowed only eight goals in its last 10 games -- including five shutouts. The No. 1 Huskies showed on Sunday why they were the top-ranked defense in the country entering the weekend, limiting Yale to six shots and one goal in an 8-1 win.
"There's a reason why they are No. 1 in the country and undefeated," said Pam Stuper, Yale's Caroline Ruth Thompson '02 Head Coach of Field Hockey. "In playing a team like this, we were looking to learn more about ourselves defensively, and also see if we could score against one of the top teams in the nation."
UConn (15-0, 5-0 Big East) scored four times in the first 19 minutes, but the Bulldogs settled down after calling timeout. They allowed just one more goal for the rest of the half, and that one came on a penalty stroke.
A goal by forward Svea Boker early in the second made the score 6-0; she was the sixth different Husky to score.
The Huskies' defense Sunday was so stout that the Bulldogs did not get their first shot of the game until 27:30 remained, and that one was a diving effort by senior forward Danee Fitzgerald that UConn goalkeeper Nina Klein stuffed.
UConn scored again at 54:15, as forward Charlotte Veitner -- the nation's leading scorer, who had been held without a goal to that point -- notched her 26th of the season.
Yale (5-8, 1-3 Ivy League) broke up the shutout with a goal from forward/midfielder Carol Middough with 12:16 remaining. The Huskies answered a minute later with another penalty corner goal, their third of the game, to make the score 8-1. Veitner assisted on the goal, tying the school record for career assists with her 46th.
Yale finished with six shots in the second half after not getting any in the first.
"We started to realize that if we used our speed, and the space we created, we could get into the circle," said Stuper. "We just needed to get more oppportunities."
This was the eighth time this season UConn scored at least six goals in a game. Yale senior goalkeeper Emilie Katz finished with 13 saves, a season high.
Yale hosts Penn next Saturday.
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity