Field hockey holds off UVM for win

by Joe Clyne | 10/24/13 10:00pm

Sam Anderson '14 was the star performer for the Big Green, tallying her first career hat trick to lead Dartmouth to victory. Anderson has now notched four goals in the last two games, her only goals of the season thus far. "Someone sat on my seat on the bus and I was really angry about it," Anderson said. "Now the whole team's joking that I have to sit in a different seat on the bus every week and have the same girl do my hair."

The Big Green started the game off hot, scoring just seven minutes into the game. It was Dartmouth's fourth shot of the game and Vermont had yet to get a shot off in the game to that point. A pass by Ali Savage '15 to Anderson on the far post set up what proved to be an easy goal.

Goalie Ellen Meyer '15 was severely tested after the first goal, meeting the challenge each time. The Catamounts had four shots and four penalty corners between the 19th and 23rd minutes, but Meyer turned Vermont away each time wanting.

After the hot stretch by Vermont, Anderson checked back into the game. Just 14 seconds after being substituted back in, Anderson scored her second goal of the game, putting Dartmouth ahead by a two goal margin. The goal came off an assist from Maggie Scanlon '14 and was deflected in to the net.

"Sam is just incredibly fast and she's developed into a really strong player," captain Olivia Quaglia '14 said. "She played amazing defense this game with good outletting that helped create some chances for us. Her greatest strength is probably her ability to predict what the other team is going to do and communicate that to the rest of the team. She took unpredictable, creative and interesting shots all game."

Dartmouth's success would prove to be somewhat short-lived as Vermont came storming back. Just six minutes after Dartmouth's insurance goal, the Catamounts notched their first of the contest. A long pass from freshman Meghan McCormick gave junior Ashley McDonald the opening she needed to rip a low shot past Meyer.

At halftime, Dartmouth held a tenuous lead by a score of 2-1. The Big Green had been dominating, and it was fully reflected on the scorecard. Dartmouth took 13 shots in the first half to Vermont's measly six. The Catamounts held a 5-2 advantage in penalty corners in the half.

"I don't know the exact stats, but it was definitely a bizarre game," Anderson said. "We dominated most categories and even when they were scoring, I kept thinking we were doing really well."

Although the Big Green controlled the pace of play, the Catamounts would not stop grinding, coming out firing on all cylinders to open the second half. After Meyer turned away an attempt from Tilton, the sophomore continued to attack and slammed home her own rebound to knot the game at two goals apiece just eight minutes into the second half.

"I think we might have let up a little bit once we got the two-goal lead," Quaglia said. "Their goals weren't necessarily flukes, but they were preventable. We just tried to turn our frustration into fuel, which we did as we regained dominance."

With the game on the line, Anderson rose to the occasion once again. In the 56th minute, Brooke Van Valkenburg '16 fired a pass across the front of the cage from the circle. Anderson received the pass and swiftly slotted it into the back of the net, attaining her first career hat trick and giving the Big Green a lead that would prove decisive.

"I got a really awesome ball from Brooke, it was just textbook to the front of the cage from the circle," Anderson said. "She made it look so easy and I just put it in."

Meyer was called on twice more and she answered the bell with two key saves that allowed the Big Green to hold on for the win.

"This game was definitely big for building our confidence," Meyer said. "We have to keep working in practice and we'll be able to keep our momentum going forward."

The Big Green controlled the pace of play from start to finish, notching 23 shots to Vermont's 11.

Dartmouth next takes the field at home on Sunday against Ivy League foe Columbia University.