COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. – A hat trick from Erin Saybolt was more than enough for the No. 20 Ursinus College field hockey team to overpower visiting Muhlenberg in a Wednesday night showdown between Centennial Conference playoff contenders.
Saybolt scored three goals – including the go-ahead marker in the 21st minute – as the Bears (8-4, 6-1) moved closer to clinching another postseason berth with a dominant performance. Saybolt (16 shots) and the home side outgunned the Mules, 20-1, in the first half and 33-3 for the night.
Ursinus peppered the Muhlenberg cage from the outset, getting off five shots in the first five minutes and change. The sixth was the icebreaker, a cross from sophomore Kayla Paulson that Saybolt was able to poke into the back of the net with just 7:24 gone by.
The Mules (4-6, 4-2) made good use of their only shot of the first period, leveling the score in the 17th minute as Sarah Raab took an insert from Stephi Rydgren and blasted home from the top of the circle.
It didn't take long for the Bears to respond, with freshman Jamie Mayer threading the needle on a pass to Saybolt at the left of the cage for an easy tap-in and a 2-1 lead.
Despite ongoing pressure from Ursinus, the score remained the same until the 47th minute. Junior Anna Hall's shot off a corner was blocked, and the ball pin-balled around in the circle until it found the stick of senior Mikayla Jordan for a finish at the post.
Saybolt put a bow on her first career hat trick with a hard shot from the top of the circle in the 59th minute.
In addition to the massive shot advantage, Ursinus piled up 17 penalty corners to the Mules' three.
The field hockey team takes a break from conference play to host Washington and Lee on Saturday.