Northwestern-NL field hockey
Brisk fall weather was the theme of Thursday night as the Northern Lehigh field hockey team took the field on breezy night.
The Bulldogs welcomed rival Northwestern to their home turf.
It turned out to be a good night for the Bulldogs as they celebrated their Senior Night festivities with a 1-0 Colonial League victory.
The Tigers came out aggressive, controlling play most of the first half.
Even with five corner chances within the first 15 minutes, Northwestern couldn’t capitalize and grab an early lead.
Senior goalie Annie McIntyre proved she was up to the task stopping the first four shots that she faced.
“Annie faced a lot of tough shots early, but she stayed calm and kept the game tied for us,” explained Bulldog coach Jessica Frew.
The Bulldogs then responded with some pressure of their own, setting up two corners before halftime.
Sophomore Jada Mills had a good look following one corner but was turned away by the Tiger goalie Alena Smargiassi.
The two teams went into half in a scoreless tie.
Northern Lehigh came out swinging in the second half controlling possession and gaining a few early corners.
Just two minutes in, the Bulldogs nearly capitalized on a corner when Jada Mills put her shot between the goalie’s legs but it was stopped short of the goal line by a Northwestern defender.
The next Bulldog threat wasn’t going to be denied, however.
After sending in a corner, freshman Hailey Evans redirected a shot and put it in the back of the net giving Northern Lehigh a 1-0 lead with 28 minutes remaining.
“She has stepped up huge as a freshman for our team so far this year and scored a huge one for us tonight,” said Frew while speaking about Evans.
The teams then traded possession until 15:30 into the second half when Northwestern’s Paige Merschman took a close shot on goal. McIntyre saved the shot but then kicked it right back out Merschman giving her a second shot that just went wide.
Defense dominated the closing minutes as Northern Lehigh protected it advantage and closed out the win.
SHOUT OUT FOR A SHUTOUT ... McIntyre stopped all six shots she faced to record the victory in net.
FRESHMAN FIRE ... On a night where the Bulldogs honored the seniors, it was freshman Evans who stole the show with her game-winner.
KEEP FIRING ... Sophomore Madison Amorim put four shots on goal for the night leading all players during the game.