Looking to improve its winning streak to four games, the Big Red field hockey team (3-2 overall, 2-0 Ivy) will host Lehigh (4-4) today at 5 p.m. on Schoellkopf Field.
With three wins, Cornell will stride onto the field ready to take advantage of every opportunity. It may be difficult for the Red to find focus at first because this is a non-Ivy, midweek game and because of the looming prelims, but it will be important for the team to play well in order to beat this solid team.
The Mountain Hawks just beat LaSalle on Monday, but before that, the team was at the end of a four-game losing streak. Despite its record, the Lehigh team has played eight tight matches. All games but one, have been won or lost by one-point margins. Also, Lehigh’s three forwards have a lot of speed, so the Red has been preparing to match the Mountain Hawks’ quickness on the field.
Cornell is playing very well and the team is ready for another win.
“I think we’re feeling very confident because we are expected to win and because we are doing very well right now,” sophomore forward Sarah Rosenbaum commented of her teammates’ attitudes.
“Lehigh has been playing a lot of close games. It has been scoring and it has been winning. We know that tomorrow could be a battle if we’re not up for this game. This is the type of team that we need to play very well at the beginning. Also, midweek games are always difficult because our players have a lot of prelims. We need to find a way to get ready for this game and be focused. Thankfully, we are at home,” head coach Michelle Tambroni said.
Practice last night was very relaxed. The Red worked on some basic skills and just did enough to get the legs warmed up for today’s game.
All aspects of the Red’s game are looking very sharp. With all of the youth on the team, the beginning of the season was a bit shaky. Now, the team is playing as a unit and both the offense and defense are doing a tremendous job.
“Our penalty corner percentage is good and we need to keep that up. Mo [Sullivan, a senior goalie] is playing very well and is backed by a strong defensive line. Also, Anna Starkey’s play has been phenomenal,” commented senior co-captain Amy Galebach.
To beat Lehigh, the Red must be focused and ready to play hard.
“I think that we’re going to capitalize on the fact that [Lehigh’s] goalie is not the strongest goalie that we will face all year. Our forwards and midfielders know that and as soon as we step into that circle, it’s time to shoot,” Tambroni said of her team’s goals.
After a big win this weekend, the Red is using its momentum to increase the win-streak. The Sunday’s victory over Penn was a giant step for the Cornell field hockey program. It is the first time since 1988 that the team has seen a 2-0 start in Ivy League competition and it could be indicative of what the team will accomplish this year. The Red hopes to continue to improve and win. The mood is very positive and everyone is excited about the possibilities.
“I think that a win would be well-deserved for all the hard work that these players have put in,” Tambroni said. “It’s not just this season that they’ve worked hard, but last spring, they put a lot time into this program as well. I want to see them get this reward, but they have to earn it.”
“It’s all about desire right now,” Sullivan said.
Archived article by Kelli Larsen