Ohio Field Hockey Wins In Penalty Shootout

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Ohio Bobcats field hockey has quickly turned the season around after beating the Longwood Lancers at home in a penalty shootout, 0-0 (3-2).

With the shootout tied at 2-2 after four attempts for each team, the Bobcats sent Lauryl Desch to the top of the circle for the Bobcats’ last try.

“There’s not as much pressure as you’d think only because we have five other girls that have amazing skills that are equally as talented as the next girl,” Desch said.

Desch was able to bury her shot after beating Longwood’s keeper and Walker blocked Longwood’s final attempt to seal the victory.

“I was confident with the five we had,” Ohio head coach Neil MacMillan said. “We’ve got some very skillful players on the ball and they did a good job of executing as we know we should.”

Ohio goalkeeper Brittany Walker was quick to credit her teammates in regards to the shootout.

“It’s just as nerve racking for them as it is for me,” Walker said. “They’re going to be just as hard on themselves if they don’t make it. I think it was awesome that our first one up, Caelyn, made it in, it was beautiful, and that kind of gave me the confidence so I really feed off of my team.”

Senior Caelyn Hartley converted the first attempt for the Bobcats before Ohio and Longwood traded misses.  Longwood freshman Edel Nyland put home the Lancers’ second shot but sophomore Kristen Buchanan answered right back for the Bobcats.  After trading misses once again, junior Meghan O’Connor equalized for the Lancers.

This win comes on the heels of Friday’s win over Ohio State, giving the Bobcats their first winning streak of the young season. 

“It’s certainly good now with a couple of wins under our belt,” Macmillan said. “That’s the confidence you need going into MAC play.”

The Bobcats certainly had their fair share of chances in the first 100 minutes of action, but just weren’t able to find the back of the net.  As a team Ohio had 16 shots, eight of which were on goal.  

“We did a good job creating opportunities but then the goalkeeper would come out and make a save,” Macmillan said. “Our speed showed today and we’ve just got to get in the habit of finishing it off earlier.”

Offense was definitely a focus of the Bobcats Sunday, as they tried to control the flow of the game as well as get out on the attack as often as possible.

“As a unit we’re finally clicking,” Desch said. “We had the majority of the possession and we were creating big events and we had a lot of opportunities up top. We really want to get as many people involved as we can in the attack, and obviously the more numbers we have than the [defense] the easier it is to score.”

The Bobcats defense was also on display, as they recorded their second straight shutout. 

“I’m just happy with how we’re playing defensively, not just in the back but across the whole three lines,” Macmillan said. 

A big part of that defense was Walker, who had four saves, all of which came in the first half. 

“If I could describe it (the defense) in one word today it would’ve been relentless,” Walker said. “They were super aggressive, really challenging. At practice we’ve been working on making those clean tackles outside the circle to not allow any more corners and that’s exactly what we did.”

Longwood managed only eight shots all game and couldn’t get anything on target in the second half, or either overtime period.

“I kind off feel like a proud mom because my defense,” Walker said. “They’ve worked so hard at practice and I just really wanted that to come out on the field.  They deserve the glory just as much as I do.”