Strong defensive effort lifts CUA into ECAC title game

Strong defensive effort lifts CUA into ECAC title game

WASHINGTON – The CUA field hockey team advanced to the ECAC Championship game with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Oneonta State on Saturday evening inside Cardinal Stadium.  Senior Meredith Chandler scored the game-winner for CUA (16-4) in the fifth minute and the Cardinals notched their school record 11th shutout.

The game was tightly contested throughout with CUA taking nine shots to Oneonta State's seven.  The Red Dragons were awarded 12 penalty corners and the Cardinals were awarded 11. 

For CUA, freshman Alison Dillard earned her second straight win with five saves in goal, while Leslie Dauphinais stopped four shots for the visitors.  With the shutout CUA sets the school record for the most in a single season with 11.  The previous record of 10 was established all the way back in 1986.

Early in the game CUA created several chances for itself as the Cardinals were awarded a pair of corners in the first four minutes.  Off of the second corner Chandler scored her 14th goal of the season at the 4:35 mark as the Cardinals took the early 1-0 lead.  

Soon after Chandler was awarded another corner and the ball worked its way around to Tracey Scanlon, who took a shot, but it went wide. 

The Cardinals continued to look to increase their lead as Elizabeth Grumbein took a shot at the 10:04 mark, but her attempt was wide. 

An Oneonta State shot by Ainsley Stoll halfway through the opening half was stopped by Dillard as she preserved the shutout for CUA. 

Several minutes later Kendall Petschauer and Chandler took back-to-back shots for CUA, but Dauphinals stopped both attempts.  With ten minutes remaining, Petschauer unleashed two straight shots, but again the Red Dragons goalkeeper sent them back.

Chandler took the final shot of the half, at the 32:05 mark, but it was blocked, sending the teams into intermission with CUA clinging to its 1-0 lead.

In the first eight minutes of the second half Oneonta State was aggressive on the offensive end, taking four shots to CUA's none.  The Red Dragons were also awarded six penalty corners in that time, while the Cardinals had zero.  Still, the CUA defense stood tall and kept its opponent out of the cage.

Stoll's shot at the 44:57 mark was stopped by Dillard, and that proved to be Oneonta's penultimate shot as the CUA defense held the Red Dragons offense in check down the stretch.

With under a minute to play CUA looked to stretch its lead to two, as Hannah Closson took a shot at the 69:06 mark, but it went high.  In the end it did not matter though, as CUA ran its record to an impressive 8-1 at home this season and notched its fourth shutout in the last five games.
CUA will now take on Drew, the other semifinal winner, on Sunday, November 14 in the 2010 ECAC Championship game from inside Cardinal Stadium.  Start time is slated for 2:00 and live stats can be found at this link.