Updated Tue, Sep 2, 2014 9:44 am
The Ohio University field hockey team fell to No. 5 Syracuse 7-0 on a windy Monday afternoon at Pruitt field.
Syracuse freshman Annalena Ulbrich scored the opening goal in the first two minutes to set the pace for the Orange to score five times in fifteen minutes.
“We didn’t start very well. We didn’t possess the ball and the first fifteen minutes we didn’t defend very well. We gave them too many opportunities,” coach Neil Macmillan said.
“I think we had about as many shots and corners as we had yesterday, so we were actually getting forward and getting opportunities.”
Ohio had four shot attempts in the first half and three in the second, but none would go in the Bobcats' favor. Freshman Maria Russell attempted two shots on goal with redshirt senior Lauryl Desch and freshman Rachel Kho each tallying one. Trailing nationally-ranked Syracuse 0-5 heading into the half, junior Clarissa Leickly said the Bobcats adjusted their formation and their mentalities.
“[Coach Macmillan] told us we needed to stay positive, we needed to step up,” Leickly said. “We played a top-five team so I think we definitely did that, we stepped up the second half. We stayed with them. We blocked them, we worked as a unit finally.”
The Bobcats came back the second half and allowed six shot attempts. Goals by Syracuse freshman Lieke Visser and Annalena Ulbrich in the second half elevated the lead 7-0.
“You have to look at the positives. We did a much better job second half. We found some different places people could play and I think we got that out of our system now,” Macmillan said. “It was just a bad fifteen minutes. You don’t normally give up that many in fifteen minutes. If we didn’t, that’s a closer game.”
Leickly said the fifth-ranked Orange was a great challenge for Ohio to face early in the season.
“It’s going to help us a lot. We’re going to look back at the film and be able to see what we did right, what we did wrong, what we did well against a top five team and how we can move forward and play those MAC teams and beat them,” Leickly said.
The team hopes to improve and move forward with the takeaways from their first two games. The Bobcats will face California in Bloomington, Ind. on Saturday, Sept. 6 at noon.