First-Time Scorers Help Field Hockey Rout Garnet

COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. – A series of first-time accomplishments helped the Ursinus College field hockey team extend a longtime streak on Wednesday.

Four different Bears registered their first collegiate goals – and seven players scored – to lead an explosive attack and anchor a 7-0 rout of visiting Swarthmore in Centennial Conference action, giving Ursinus its 26th consecutive victory in the series. Sophomores Anna Hall and Brianne Nicholas joined freshmen Zia Cooper and Gabriela Howell in finding the back of the cage for the first time as the 15th-ranked Bears (4-3, 2-0) picked up their ninth straight regular-season triumph in conference play.

Sophomore Erin Saybolt produced a goal and two assists for a career-best four points, while classmate Abbie Roberts and junior Maria DiCioccio also scored.

Junior Jules Singer (one save) and rookie Addie Frey combined for Ursinus' third shutout of the year.

Despite massive advantages in shots (27-2) and corners (17-2), it took some time for the Bears to impose their will. Swarthmore (4-3, 0-2) earned two penalty corners in the 12th minute, forcing a save from Jules Singer on one of them.

Ursinus continued to press, earning ten corners in the first half alone. Two of them led to goals, the first coming in the 19th minute when Howell finished off a nice backhand pass from Saybolt at the left post to open the scoring and get the Bears' attack in a rhythm. Another goal followed just a minute and ten seconds later, as senior Brooke Overly passed to the top of the circle for a blast by Saybolt that made it 2-0.

The Bears padded their lead – and capped a run of three goals in 4:34 – in the 24th minute. Nicholas made good on a rare scoring opportunity, lifting a shot to the top right corner of the cage after Garnet keeper Zelda Bank kicked out a save on a shot by sophomore Gemma Dufoe.

The home side went right back to work out of the halftime break, extending its margin to 4-0 less than three minutes into the second half when Hall finished off Dufoe's pass across the circle. Just over four minutes later, Roberts was in perfect positon at the left post to tap in a feed from Saybolt.

Just shy of the 20-minute mark, Cooper recorded her first career point on an assist to DiCioccio. The rookie took a pass at the right post and niftily slid a feed across the cage for an easy finish by DiCioccio.

The Bears capped the fireworks with 11:17 to play on Cooper's re-direction of a powerful shot by senior Katelyn Hauck following a corner.

Bank was peppered all night before finishing with 12 saves, and Ellory Laning added one of her own for the Garnet.

Ursinus blanked Swarthmore for the third time in as many seasons.

The field hockey team resumes CC competition at Gettysburg on Saturday.