Temple Field Hockey Loses Momentum, Falls to No. 10 Delaware

WRITTEN BY: JACOB GUZDEK

Coming off a huge comeback win against LaSalle last week, Temple (1-4) was unable to keep the momentum going, falling to the Delaware Blue Hens (4-1) by a score of 5-2.

The Blue Hens got going early, as they got on the board less than 90 seconds after the start of the game Redshirt junior midfielder Kayla Devlin buried a pass from sophomore forward Lisa Giezeman off a penalty corner, giving Delaware a 1-0 lead.

That was only the beginning of an action-packed back-and-forth half, with both teams combining to score six goals in the game’s first 35 minutes.

Facing an early deficit, Temple was able to take advantage of back-to-back penalty corners, tying the game at 1 in the 11th minute as freshman midfielder Maddie Merton scored her first career collegiate goal off a textbook assist from redshirt junior forward Sarah Keer.

“It felt great to get my first goal and it was just great execution by our team on that penalty corner, and I was just fortunate enough to be on the post to put it in,” said Merton.

It didn’t remain a tie game for long. Delaware struck back with goals in the 14th and 21st minutes to take a 3-1 lead.

The Owls answered in the 25th minute to shorten Delaware’s lead. Junior midfielder Rachel Mueller rang a shot off the post and sophomore midfielder Jessika Daniels was there to put home the rebound for her second goal of the season.

Before the first half ended, the Blue Hens padded their lead when sophomore midfielder Greta Nauck found the back of the net off a penalty corner for her sixth goal of the season.

In the second half, Temple generated some early chances, but the Owls just couldn’t find the back of the net. From a shot that missed wide off a penalty corner in the 44th minute, to a deflection by senior forward Katie Foran off a stellar feed from Merton, luck was not on the Owls’ side.

The only goal of the half was scored in the 50th minute by Delaware, as Nauck put home her second of the game off a nifty give-and-go play with sophomore midfielder Sabrina Rhodes.

The Owls put on some pressure in the final five minutes of the game, but ultimately weren’t able to get a shot on net.

Temple finished the game with four shots on goal and generated four penalty corners, while the Blue Hens finished the game with 17 shots on goal and three penalty corners.

Though the Blue Hens found the back of the net five times, Owls freshman goalkeeper Maddie Lilliock made a career high 11 saves, while senior back Ali Meszaros recorded her third defensive save of the season.

“Maddie had a great game and there were a lot of one-on-ones where she came out and made a stick tackle and those saves gave us the energy to keep fighting,” said junior forward Hattie Kuhns.

The Owls will look to get back in the win column on Sunday, when they take on Drexel at 1 p.m. at Howarth Field.

“We will look to put a little more pressure on the ball, handle the ball a bit more and put some more focus on our receptions against Drexel on Sunday,” said Head Coach Marybeth Freeman.

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