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Alumnae Weekend Includes No. 16 Harvard, Liberty

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)

YALE vs. HARVARD SATURDAY 1:00 P.M.

YALE vs. LIBERTY SUNDAY 2:00 P.M.

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – This promises to be a special weekend in New Haven, as the Yale field hockey program celebrates Alumnae Weekend and the 45th anniversary of its first varsity team. The Bulldogs will start by hosting a ceremony Saturday morning to break ground on Carol Roberts Field House, the new home of Yale Field Hockey and Yale Softball. They will then host archrival Harvard in the Ivy League opener (1:00 p.m., Ivy League Network, ESPN3). Saturday's festivities wrap up with a dinner and screening of a video documenting 45 years of field hockey at Yale, and on Sunday the Bulldogs host Liberty (2:00 p.m., Ivy League Network).

YALE SPLITS ANOTHER ROAD TRIP

Yale (3-2, 0-0 Ivy League) split a road trip for the second weekend in a row last weekend, topping Central Michigan 2-0 Friday but falling at Michigan State 4-0 Sunday. Friday saw first-year goalkeeper Sydney Terroso (York, Pa.) earn her first career shutout. She made four saves, and the Bulldogs also got a defensive save from sophomore back/midfielder Tara Litjens (Brookside, N.J.). A pair of sophomore forward/midfielders, Bridget Condie (St. Louis, Mo.) and Camille Scheyer (Glencoe, Ill.), scored Yale's goals. On Sunday the Bulldogs fell to MSU despite a season-high 10 saves from Terroso.

The Bulldogs had split their previous trip by winning 5-2 at Hofstra after falling 4-2 at Quinnipiac.

THOMPSON RETURNS TO HOME STATE

The games in Michigan marked a homecoming of sorts for senior back Tess Thompson (Ann Arbor, Mich.), whose hometown is roughly 60 miles away from Michigan State. The Bulldogs attended the Michigan-Air Force football game Saturday in Ann Arbor.

Thompson has missed just two games for her career, appearing in 53 and making 19 starts. In her first three seasons she managed to earn three different team awards: the Coaches' Award (twice), the Amanda Walton Award for overcoming challenges and the Senior Award as the first-year team member who "reflects positive contribution to the team's philosophy and whose individual character encourages the future direction and excellence of Yale Field Hockey." Thompson is also a three-time NFHCA National Academic Squad honoree.

SEPT. 22-24: CELEBRATING YALE'S 45th

Alumnae Weekend will have an added dimension this year, as Yale celebrates the 45th anniversary of its first varsity field hockey team. In addition to annual events such as the Alumnae Game, this year's weekend (Sept. 22-24) also includes a dinner and reception in the Schley Room at Ingalls Rink Saturday that will feature a screening of the video 45 Years of Field Hockey at Yale. Earlier that day, there will be a groundbreaking ceremony for Carol Roberts Field House -- the new home of Yale Field Hockey and Yale Softball -- prior to Yale's game vs. Harvard.

Further information on Alumnae Weekend is available at https://www.cvent.com/c/express/1245079a-dfbe-416b-b0bd-f5a00afb6e6c

COMING SOON: CAROL ROBERTS FIELD HOUSE

The Yale Athletic Department broke ground on its newest facility, Carol Roberts Field House, in August. Carol Roberts Field House is the first building of its kind at Yale -- a comprehensive space that meets the needs of two women's teams. Situated between Johnson Field (home to the Yale field hockey team) and William O. DeWitt '63 Family Field (home to the Yale softball team), the 5,900-square-foot building will include spacious locker rooms, a training room, a satellite coaches' office, a team meeting space and a second-story observation roof deck featuring a glass-walled event space.

Carol Roberts '81 provided the lead gift for the field house. Roberts played field hockey and softball for the Bulldogs, winning an Ivy League championship with each team. Following graduation she joined International Paper, where she served as a senior vice president. She is active as a member of the Yale Field Hockey Association board, and in 2009, she received the Yale Athletics George H.W. Bush Lifetime of Leadership Award.

MIDDOUGH OFF TO BIG START

Senior forward Carol Middough (Oceanport, N.J.) has led the team in goals and points (10-3-23) for the past two years, and appears poised to accomplish that feat again this year. She opened the 2017 season with three goals and an assist in the 6-2 win vs. Sacred Heart, earning Ivy League Player of the Week honors in the process. That was her first career hat trick. She added another goal at Hofstra, and enters this weekend leading the team in goals and points (4-1-9).

Middough was a second team All-Ivy League selection last season. She achieved career highs in all three scoring categories and factored in 37 percent (13 of 35) of the team's goals. One of the team's top options on attack penalty corners, Middough can play forward or midfield.

TWINS

Senior sisters Katie Smith (Duxbury, Mass.) and Lily Smith (Duxbury, Mass.) are identical twins who play the same positions (midfielder/forward) and also play lacrosse for Yale. Katie started 15 games for the field hockey team last season and Lily started 11.

CAPTAIN KIWI

Senior back Kiwi Comizio (New Vernon, N.J.), elected captain by her teammates, started all 51 games of her career prior to this year and was a second team All-Ivy pick last year. She earned Yale's Player of the Year Award, finishing second in the league and first on the team in assists with a career-high nine. She was also an NFHCA National Academic Squad for the third straight season.

AROUND THE WORLD

In addition to 17 Americans from nine states (California, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia), the Yale roster includes student-athletes from four other countries: first-year midfielder/forward Imogen Davies (Kilmacolm, Scotland), sophomore midfielder/back Holly Jackson (Glastonbury, England), first-year midfielder/forward Olivia Levieux (Johannesburg, South Africa) and sophomore back Alex MacKay (North Vancouver, B.C.). Additionally, sophomore back/midfielder Tara Litjens (Brookside, N.J.) lived in China for 12 years and the Netherlands for 1.5 years.

CLASS OF 2021

Yale welcomes six freshmen to the roster for the 2017 season. The group comes from six different high schools and three different U.S. states, along with one from Scotland and one from South Africa.

Two freshmen, Anissa Abboud (Bethlehem, Pa.) and Sarah King (Davidsonville, Md.), could play forward or midfield. Abboud set the school records for goals in a season and a career at Liberty High School, where she also helped the team set the school record for wins in a season. King was named Player of the Year by both the Baltimore Sun and the Washington Post last year after captaining her team to a win in the Maryland Class 4A State Championship.

The freshmen class adds greatly to Yale's midfield depth -- and international flavor, with three different countries represented at that position. Iliana Cabral (Camarillo, Calif.) is a three-time National Futures Championship selection who served as captain of the Moorpark club team for three seasons. Imogen Davies (Kilmacolm, Scotland) has played for Scotland's U16 and U18 teams, while also captaining the team at St. Columba's School. Olivia Levieux (Johannesburg, South Africa), who could also play forward, was captain of the Gauteng (state) team in South Africa twice, and captain of her team at St. Stithians' Girls' College as well.

Freshman goalie Sydney Terroso (York, Pa.) brings impressive credentials to New Haven, having been a first team all-league selection for the last two years at Dallastown Area High School. She set her school's record for shutouts in a season and helped the team to league and county championships all four years of her career, including an undefeated record this past season.

PAM STUPER, YALE'S CAROLINE RUTH THOMPSON '02 HEAD COACH OF FIELD HOCKEY

Pam Stuper, a member of the USA Field Hockey Hall of Fame who has been a part of four NCAA championship teams, is in her 13th year as Yale's Caroline Ruth Thompson '02 Head Coach of Field Hockey. Yale's assistant coaches are Mary Beth Barham '13 and Jess Barnett.

Stuper led the Bulldogs to an Ivy League championship in 2011 -- the school's first since 1980. The championship came as part of a remarkable run of success for the Bulldogs in recent years under Stuper, the 2009 NFHCA Mideast Region Coach of the Year. They went 24-11 in the Ivy League in the five seasons from 2009 through 2013, the second-best record in the league in that span. Yale finished the 2011 season with a school-record 69 goals, marking the sixth straight season the Bulldogs increased their goal total over the previous year.

A SEASON TO BUILD ON

The 2016 season was marked by dramatic progress for the Yale field hockey team, as the Bulldogs more than doubled their win total from the previous season. They also increased their goal scoring by a whopping 75 percent while decreasing their goals allowed by 13 percent. With those positive trends in place, eight players who started 11 or more games for Yale in 2016 remain on the roster for 2017. Those players -- along with seven other returnees and six talented incoming freshmen -- give the Bulldogs reason to believe they can make more strides in 2017.

YALE HONORS THIS SEASON

SCOUTING HARVARD

Harvard (4-2, 0-0 Ivy League) earned its first Ivy League title since 2004 last season, going undefeated in Ivy play. The Crimson's two losses this season have both come against teams ranked in the top 13, and they have outscored their other four opponents 18-6. They rank eighth nationally in assists per game (3.00) and points per game (9.67). Six different players have scored at least two goals, including three who have four: forward Maddie Earle, midfielder/forward Mimi Tarrant and midfielder Bente van Vlijmen. Libby Manela (.750 save percentage, 1.19 goals-against average) and Olivia Startup (.538, 2.07) have split time in goal.

SCOUTING LIBERTY

Liberty (3-3, 1-0 Big East), which plays at Quinnipiac Friday, has won three of its last four games. All three of the Lady Flames' losses have come to nationally ranked opponents. Midfielder Agueda Moroni is fourth in the nation in goals per game (1.17) and seventh in the nation in points per game (2.67). She has seven goals and two assists in the first six games. Goalkeeper Allison Schaefer has a .705 save percentage and a 2.17 goals-against average.

DON'T I KNOW YOU?

Longtime Yale fans will recognize a pair of familiar faces on the opposing sideline this weekend. Harvard assistant coach Ainslee Lamb, in her first season with the Crimson, was Yale's head coach from 1999-2005 and had Pam Stuper as one of her assistants. Liberty head coach Nikki Parsley was an assistant coach at Yale in 2014 and 2015, then served as an assistant at Liberty last season before being promoted to the Lady Flames' top spot in January.

There were also a pair of familiar Yale faces on the Michigan State sideline when the Bulldogs played at MSU Sept. 17. Spartans assistant coach Georgia Holland '14 was a two-time first team All-Ivy League honoree for Yale, captaining the team in 2013 and helping the team to an Ivy League championship in 2011. MSU assistant Tamara Durante spent 10 seasons as an assistant at Yale before joining the Spartans staff prior to the 2015 season.

 

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