Preview: Field hockey kicks off Patriot League Tournament Friday
Will the Eagles clinch their 11th championship title?
The AU field hockey team has been number one on the Patriot League’s ranking stats for weeks. With 13 wins and only five losses, AU is a the team to fear heading into the postseason. On Friday Nov. 3, the second seeded Eagles will play in the semifinal round of the Patriot League Tournament against third seeded Bucknell at 3 p.m. in Boston, Massachusetts
AU cruised past Bucknell when the two battled on Jacobs Field on Sept. 16, defeating the Bisons 4-0. The Eagles scored all four goals in the second half of the game; the first came from freshman midfielder Noor Coenen, and the last three were scored by senior forward Haley Bowcutt. Junior midfielder Rafaela Rubas helped Bowcutt with assists on the second and fourth goals. AU’s junior goalkeeper Maura Jacobs recorded two saves while Bucknell’s senior goalkeeper Emily Finn repelled seven shots.
Rubas was named PL Offensive Player of the Year on Tuesday. Rubas was voted Preseason Offensive Player of the Year in August, and she has kept her high status on the field and in the league for the past three months. Coenen was named PL Rookie of the Year. Both athletes have had explosive seasons, and the postseason should be no different. Rubas and Coenen were joined by junior midfielder Megan Benson on the All-Patriot League First Team. The All-Patriot League Second Team featured senior forward Haley Bowcutt, junior defender Rachel Stefano and Jacobs.
Keep an eye out for Bucknell’s aggressive junior forward M.C. Evans, who recorded two shots on goal the team’s September game. Evans is eighth on the list of PL assists this season, having played 17 games with an average of 0.353 per game.
The PL’s season’s stats feature two Eagles in the top five players. Coenen finished the year second in the PL in two categories, goals scored (15) and points (33), and Rubas finished third with 12 goals and 32 points. The two powerhouses have been consistent throughout the season with having possession of the ball and taking shots on goal, which have made their ways in the net more times than not.
Last year, AU brought home the PL championship trophy home after beating Boston University 1-0 in Boston. Rubas secured the win with her goal, which was pounded into the net off of a penalty corner shot only seven minutes into the game. With this goal, Rubas was crowned tournament MVP.
The winner of the AU-Bucknell game advances to face either Boston University or Holy Cross on Sunday at 12:00 p.m. The Eagles only Patriot League loss of the season came on the road against BU Oct. 7.