The Fighting Scots field hockey team looked to keep its winning streak rolling as it took on the Ohio Wesleyan Battling Bishops. Wednesday’s match served as the team’s home opener after it battled the Washington & Jefferson Presidents to a 4-3 overtime win in the season opener on Saturday, Sept. 4th.
Clear blue skies were nowhere to be seen as an overcast day served as the backdrop to Wednesday’s conference matchup. The Battling Bishops went into its match against Wooster sporting a record of 2-1. However, escaping Wooster’s storied home stadium with a victory is something that few teams accomplish.
The game got off to an electric start as the Fighting Scots strung passes together at will, but were unable to threaten the Battling Bishops’ goal in the early stages. A series of questionable calls against the Scots gifted the Bishops numerous opportunities throughout the first minutes of the match. After a particularly suspect call, the Battling Bishops managed to break the deadlock. Following a quick restart, an Ohio Wesleyan forward managed to loft the ball over the head of Junior goalie Zoë Semersky ’23 to score the first goal of the game.
In the fifth minute, following a scramble in front of the Wooster goal, a diving effort from a particularly determined Battling Bishop doubled the Ohio Wesleyan lead. The Wooster attack was hindered by numerous foul calls for the majority of the first quarter. The referees seemed to be intent on keeping the game clean and fair, which did not bode well with the tenacious nature of the Fighting Scots. The first quarter closed with the Battling Bishops holding a two-goal advantage over Wooster.
The second quarter continued much like the first as the Battling Bishops managed to increase their lead to three scores in the 20th minute. Wooster played defensively as Ohio Wesleyan attacked for much of the quarter. The Battling Bishops had ridden into Papp Stadium with a two-game winning streak, only conceding two goals in their first three games of the season. Their confidence and depth were evident as they outshot the Fighting Scots 6-0 in the second quarter. Despite the flurry of shots that the Wooster goal faced, the 20th minute goal from Ohio Wesleyan was the only success of the quarter.
Halftime provided some reprieve for the Fighting Scots as they looked to come out in the second half and flip the script on the Battling Bishops, who held the upper hand throughout the first half. During the 3rd quarter, the Wooster attack looked invigorated and eager to claw its way back into the game. The three-goal lead for the Battling Bishops looked to be at stake early in the 3rd quarter as Wooster took two shots and limited OWU to only one attempt. However, the Bishops’ attack proved to be decisive as it found the back of the net and stretched the lead to 4-0 in favor of Ohio Wesleyan. The goal came in the 39th minute and would be the last of Wednesday’s affair.
Wooster’s energy only increased going into the 4th quarter as the Fighting Scots continued to battle. The Wooster attack outshot Ohio Wesleyan 5-2 in the 4th quarter. The defense, anchored by goaltender Lucy Segal ’23, stood strong and did not allow the Bishops’ attack to stretch their four-goal lead any further. The young Wooster team showed a great amount of tenacity as they took control of the 4th quarter and refused to go down without a fight.
Senior captain Catilyn O’Connor ’22, alluded to the positive attitude of her team saying, “they were a tough team to open up to, but being a very young team, we came out strong and are excited and eager to meet them again.” The optimism and desire from one of the team’s leaders speaks to the hunger that this team carries. This intensity allowed the Scots to bounce back by dispatching the Concordia Falcons in two games this past weekend to put the team back on track.
The value of playing a strong team was something fellow captain, Lucy Agurkis ’23, also alluded to as she spoke about the team’s performance. Agurkis said, “this game was a good learning opportunity, I’m so proud of this team for never giving up and leaving it all on the field.”
Our Fighting Scots will take on the DePauw Tigers Saturday at 11:00 AM at the storied John P. Papp Stadium as part of Black & Gold Weekend, make sure to come out and support!