October 07, 2016 by Peter Sandilos
The Drexel University field hockey team played two games this past week against Northeastern University and Northwestern University on Sept. 30 and Oct. 2 respectively.
The game against Northeastern was the first Colonial Athletic Association game of the year for the Dragons. This was a game the Dragons really needed, so that they could start their conference run on a strong note.
Northwestern was a tough matchup. The Wildcats were ranked sixth and came into the game with a solid 9-2 record. The Dragons certainly had their work cut out for them. Winning both games would be a big help for the team, but even winning one of these games would be a big help for their postseason aspirations.
Drexel and Northeastern played a tough game. Each team found it difficult to score. It wasn’t until there was about nine minutes left in the first half when Northeastern struck with the first goal of the game.
Drexel came back to tie the game with six minutes, 24 seconds left. Senior Jessica McCarthy was able to score her fifth goal of the season off of an assist by sophomore Megan Wiest.
The first half ended with a score of 1-1, which ended up being a pretty high scoring half. Drexel and Northeastern went into the second half with even more defensive energy than the first.
Neither team could find an opening to score.
The teams had their opportunities to score but both squads missed shots wide, and both goalies made impressive saves. The second half finished with Drexel and Northeastern both tied 1-1.
Overtime proved to be just as intense as the first two periods. Drexel and Northeastern continued to struggle to score. At the six minute mark the Dragons finally scored their first goal since the first half. Drexel continued to play outstanding defense, and won the game 2-1.
This was an important win for the Dragons since Northeastern is in their conference. The Dragons are now 1-0 in the CAA.
Northwestern proved to be a tougher task for the Dragons. The Wildcats were ranked No. 6 in the NCAA, and after a tough matchup against Northeastern, the Dragons had their work cut out for them. Unfortunately, Northwestern came out of the gates hot.
Within the first nine minutes of the half the Wildcats scored three unanswered goals to go up 3-0 with 26 minutes left. Northwestern finished off the half with another goal to go up 4-0.
The second half was similar. Northwestern did have two yellow cards called within four minutes of each other, but penalties did not matter. Northwestern scored again at the 28 minute mark in the second half to put the Wildcats up 5-0.
Northwestern scored two more times, increasing its lead to 7-0. Drexel scored twice, but it was not be enough to come back. McCarthy and senior Idrienne Walker both scored their sixth goals of the season.
It was a frustrating game for the Dragons, but overall the weekend was not too bad to them. Their biggest game was their conference game against Northeastern which they won. This brought them to 1-0 in the CAA, which is vital for their postseason hopes.
Even against a tough matchup like Northwestern, the Dragons continued to play hard and never gave up. These tough matchups will only help the team grow. The Dragons will host conference foe James Madison Oct. 9 at Buckley Field for Alumni day. The team will have the opportunity to meet some great Dragons from the past and hopefully earn a hard fought conference win in front of them.