Field hockey ends record-setting season in North Carolina
3:02 p.m., Nov. 16, 2013--The No. 14 University of Delaware field hockey team held its own Saturday, Nov. 16, against No. 3 North Carolina in the first round of the NCAA Tournament at Francis E. Henry Stadium in Chapel Hill, N.C., but a two-minute span deflated the Blue Hens in a 6-2 loss to bring a successful season to a close for UD.
Freshman Esmée Peet posted Delaware’s first goal of the game off of a penalty corner in the 13th minute to tie the game at 1-1.
Skaters win gold
The Tar Heels (17-5) quickly took a 4-1 lead within the next 7 minutes as Nina Notman collected one goal and teammate Charlotte Craddock tallied two goals over a two-minute span from 17:48 to 19:51.
UD (17-5) was able to regroup during halftime, but gave up Craddock’s third goal of the game in the 48th minute to go down, 5-1.
Less than a minute later, senior Toni Popinko registered her seventh goal of the year on a rebound after a save from classmate goalie Sarah Scher to pull the Hens within three at 5-2.
UNC’s Marta Malmberg gave the Heels the final four-tally lead at 6-2 in the 54th minute on a shot just left of the cage. With the win, North Carolina advances to face the winner of Wake Forest/Old Dominion on Sunday, Nov. 17.
Scher finished the game with six saves while UNC’s Sassi Ammer collected all three team saves in 51:56 minutes of play.
The Blue Hens complete a 2013 season where they were both Colonial Athletic Association regular season and tournament champions. Delaware also boasted the CAA Co-Coach of the Year in Rolf van de Kerkhof and Player and Rookie of the Year in Peet.
Head Coach Rolf van de Kerkhof said, “I’d like to congratulate Delaware field hockey on a great season, and it is the first of many to come. With that, we have to continue to build our foundation for a brighter future for our program. Today we had a great game against a top, respected program in North Carolina…. A sincere thank you to the seniors who have helped us be who we are today. I am excited for the returning players to continue to build from our learning and a joyful 2013 season."
For the complete game story, go to the BlueHens.com website.