Tonight the Red field hockey team will take on intrastate rival Syracuse at Schoellkopf Field in search of its third win of the season and upstate New York bragging rights. Forget the Red’s 2-4 record, the Cornell-Syracuse game has traditionally been very close contest.
“Syracuse is a tough team,” said head coach Donna Hornibrook. “We respect them but there has been an ongoing thing between Syracuse and Cornell. They have a very good program and we always rise to the occasion when we play them.”
The 16th ranked Orange are coming off two overtime victories last week. On Wednesday, Syracuse beat 17th ranked Penn State and on Sunday the Orange overcame ninth ranked Boston College. The efforts of the Orange were rewarded when sophomore forward Ashley Fry was named Big East Offensive Player of the Week and senior goalie Betsy Wagner was named Big East Defensive Player of the Week. Fry scored two goals in the Syracuse win over Boston College and is tied for the team lead in scoring with six points. Wagner has a 1.70 goals against average and a .808 save percentage.
The Red is also riding high going into tonight’s game. Last Saturday, the Red earned its second victory of the season, beating Yale 2-1. Senior Danielle Dunn carried the Red, scoring two unassisted goals. The goals were her forth and fifth of the season and earned her Ivy Field Hockey Player of the Week Honors. Dunn leads the team in goals scored and her 12 total points also leads the Red. Dunn and sophomore Lindsay Moyer are two of only three Ivy League players to average more than 1.5 points a game. The entire Red offense has preformed well all season and is on pace to surpass last year’s total of 15 goals.
“Danielle Dunn has had her two best games of the year,” Hornibrook said. “Lindsay Moyer has been solid. Gina Testa is always dangerous and works well offensively and defensively. Sara Wiener has the ability to create really great opportunities. We’re going to put that lineup out there and hopefully get the same, strong effort.”
Senior goalie Lori Blutinger made nine saves and held Yale to one goal, while the Red offense managed just six shots.
“We need that kind of performance every day,” Hornibrook said. “We’re not a team that’s going to roll over anybody. We have everybody defend — from the front to the back. That’s our game. It’s a team effort.”
The victory over Yale gave the Red a much-needed shot of confidence.
“We’ve really been putting everything together,” said senior co-captain Gina Testa. “We had a few things not go our way in other games. But Saturday night it came together and a win was exactly what we needed.”
Throughout the season, the Red has played its best at home and tomorrow’s game will be the great opportunity to knock off a ranked opponent for the first time since 2002.
“We absolutely love playing on our home turf,” Testa said. “The games we haven’t played well in have been on the road. We’re working on that but we definitely feel like we have a home field advantage.”
Archived article by James Rich
Sun Staff Writer