OXFORD, Ohio –The Miami University field hockey team used a four-goal second half to break a scoreless tie and earn a 4-1 victory over UC Davis on Tuesday. Junior back Ali Froede scored the first two goals to lead Miami to the win. The RedHawks improve to 5-4 on the season, while the Aggies fall to 1-5.
“We knew that (UC Davis) was good on defense and good in goal, so we were going to need a lot of opportunities to score a couple of goals,” said head coach Iñako Puzo. “Before the game I was a little afraid of how my team was going to react to resistance from UC Davis, because I knew we would get that resistance. I think my team came away with a victory because they reacted well, kept working hard and never gave up.”
“I thought it was about never giving up,” added senior goalkeeper Sarah Mueller. “We had to play our best for 70 minutes and feel we ended it as we started off, without any lapses.”
Despite Miami outshooting UC Davis, 12-2, and having an 8-1 advantage in penalty corners, the first half was scoreless. Senior forward Emily Gruesser and freshman midfielder Carla Romagosa each had great chances off penalty corners, but each was stopped by Aggie goalkeeper Danielle Herrington.
The RedHawks finally broke free in the 44th minute. After earning a penalty corner, senior midfielder Jordan Long found Froede for a tip-in to put Miami on the board. Less than four minutes later on another penalty corner, junior midfielder Gabby Goldach found Froede on a similar play to make it 2-0.
In the 61st minute, junior midfielder Valentina Neira brought the ball deep into the circle. She passed it backwards to Gruesser who wound up and found the back of the net from the top of the circle. UC Davis got on the board in the 63rd minute, but Miami completed the scoring in the 69th minute when Romagosa passed the ball to Long on the left side of the circle after an initial shot by senior forward Alyssa Logan was saved.
“UC Davis was a good team that put up a fight,” said Froede. They have a great goalkeeper that really put us on our toes. But we kept getting opportunities in our circle and did not give up, even if the opportunities were not going our way.”
Miami outshot the Aggies, 26-9, for the contest. The RedHawks finished with a 15-3 advantage in penalty corners. Dechant led the way with five shots, including three on goal, while Mueller made four saves in goal.
Miami returns to action on Friday when it heads to Bloomington, Ind. for a pair of contests. Miami will take on host Indiana Friday at 3 p.m. The RedHawks conclude the week with a neutral-site contest against eighth-ranked Penn State on Saturday at 2 p.m.