The University of Mary Washington’s field hockey team and women’s soccer team both had highly successful starts to the season. The field hockey team beat a pair of nationally ranked opponents, while the women’s soccer squad was victorious in their first two matches of the year as well.
The field hockey team knocked off 13th-ranked Lynchburg College 3-1 last Thursday, Sep. 1, to notch their first win of 2011. The Hornets stuck first, when junior Lindsay Leonard ripped a goal in the 22nd minute off an assist from senior Deanna Smith. UMW responded just over five minutes later when junior Florence George set up fellow junior Lisa Charney for the equalizing score. Freshman Courtney Rampey broke the 1-1 tie in the second half, when she found the back of the net off a deflection from a penalty corner shot. Rampey would later score her second goal of the game in the 51st minute to pad the Eagles lead and seal the upset win.
In their Sunday game, the field hockey team succeeded in their attempt for another upset bid, this time topping No. 5 Lebanon Valley College 5-2. The Eagles again fell behind 1-0 early, but got into a groove offensively after a slow start and scored five unanswered goals to take a commanding lead. Mary Washington outshot the Dutchmen 24-18, and five different Lady Eagles scored the five UMW goals. Charney was again a crucial player, totaling three points in the game (one goal, two assists).
The next field hockey game will be a home match tomorrow at 6 p.m. against Washington & Lee University.
The women’s soccer team had wins against less heralded teams, but they were victories nonetheless. The Eagles trailed Shenandoah University 1-0 at halftime of their first game last Friday, but second half goals from sophomores Erin Reynolds and Carly Davis helped bring UMW back to capture the win. Mary Washington did a better job of controlling the ball after intermission, as they limited the Hornets to just four second half shots and cut down on their corner kick opportunities.
The team’s second victory this past Monday was much more dominant, as the Eagles destroyed Eastern Mennonite University 6-0. Tina Rader was the story of the blowout win, as she scored four consecutive Eagles goals, all in the second half, to lead the UMW offensive attack. Mary Washington outshot the Royals 20-2, and completely stifled Eastern Mennonite’s offense.
The women’s soccer game has a pair of home games this weekend, as they battle Methodist University on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. and then host Alvernia College the following day at 2 p.m.