The field hockey team is determined to get its Ivy League campaign off to a good start as the Red travels to Columbia for its season opener tonight.
The Red were upset and disappointed by a midweek loss to Colgate on Wednesday, but the loss has galvanized the team and given them motivation for tonight”s competition.
‘I think we were disappointed in ourselves,’ said head coach Donna Hornibrook. ‘We were disappointed in our performance for sure. But I think the focus will be there for the Ivy schedule.’
Cornell will face an opponent that has had its own pre-season struggles.
The Lions got off to a winning start with a 1-0 victory over Monmouth, but fell short against Hofstra — earning a 1-1 record heading into tonight”s match-up against the Red.
‘Their biggest threat is a decent attack,’ Hornibrook said of the Lions. ‘They also have a solid sweeper. They have two key players. We”ll have to shut down their forward.’
Sophomore Jen Cruz is the only player to score for the Lions this season, and will be leading the attack against Cornell.
The Red will be looking to have a strong showing from both defense and offense in the same game — a crucial element which has eluded the team so far this season. The offense was strong in the season opener against Lehigh, when it notched six goals.
The defense has also come up big at times, but the team has yet to bring the two components together in the same game.
‘We”re still optimistic,’ Hornibrook said. ‘We still have a chance to fix it. We”ve made some changes in the line-up.’
Last year, the Red shut out the Lions by a score of 3-0. Cornell dominated the game, outshooting the Lions by a 19-6 margin. The Red was victorious the year before that as well. However, the Red was on a winning streak before both of those games. The fact that the team has a 1-2 record heading into this game could affect the confidence level of the team. The Red could also be its own biggest challenge tonight. Against Colgate, the Red suffered from poor execution and lack of experience.
To win, Hornibrook feels the team must get its defense and offense on the same page. ‘We haven”t put all the facets of the game together yet,’ she said. ‘In one game we attack well, in another we defend well. Now we”re getting into the fourth game. I hope we can put it all together.’
Hornibrook is confident the team is up to the challenge.
‘We”ve had two good performances this weekend,’ she said. ‘It”s an indication of what we can do. ‘I think [the team] is looking forward to it.’
Archived article by Olivia Dwyer
Sun Staff Writer