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Field Hockey Returns to Conference Championship to Defend Title

(Posted November 4, 2009)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. - The Juniata College field hockey team is one step closer to taking its third straight Landmark Conference Championship with a 4-1 victory over the fourth seed, Drew University, on Wednesday afternoon.

The win vaults the Eagles into the championship game against Susquehanna, which will be played on Winton Hill Field on Saturday, November 7.

The Eagles, the number one seed, jumped on the Rangers early, opening up a 2-0 lead in the first 15 minutes of play.

Junior Sam Smith (East Stroudsburg, Pa./East Stroudsburg) drew first blood as she scored an unassisted goal, 3:28 into the match. After a scramble in the circle, Smith was able to corral the loose ball and beat the goalie from eight yards out to score her second goal of the season.

Sophomore Caitlyn Bowman (Seven Valleys, Pa./Dallastown) made it 2-0 when she tapped home a pass from sophomore Kim Amrod (Ridgefield, Conn./Ridgefield) with 20:28 showing on the scoreboard.

The second half was just as impressive for Juniata (16-3, 6-0 Landmark) as it scored two more goals to put the game away. Newcomer Caroline Phillips (Wilmington, Del./Concrod) scored 6:09 into the second half to put the Eagles up 3-0. Phillips drove home a corner from the top of the circle. Amrod picked up her second assist of the game.

Sophomore Suzi Lindquist (Richmond, Va./Henrico) capped the scoring for the Eagles at the 53:50 mark. She perfectly placed a penalty stroke that beat Ranger keeper Stef Rutkowski high above her pad side.

Drew (12-8, 2-4 Landmark) cleared the shutout with a penalty stroke of its own with less than four minutes remaining in the game. Meghan Howlett beat junior goalkeeper Moira Nugent (Lancaster, Pa./Lampeter-Strasburg) for the Rangers lone goal.

Senior Denalyn Spratt (Haddon Heights, N.J./Haddon Heights) got the start in goal for the Eagles and recorded one save before giving way for Nugent who played the final 16 minutes. Nugent also saved one shot on the day.

Lauren Fasano started in goal for the Rangers, allowing two goals and recording three saves. Rutkowski played the entire second half, stopping five shots and giving up two goals as well.

The Eagles outshot Drew, 23-7, while also winning the penalty corner battle, 17-8.

Juniata will play the Crusaders from Susquehanna University who defeated Catholic University in the other semifinal match, 2-1, on Saturday at 2 p.m. Juniata is the number one seed while Susquehanna is the third seed.

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Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.