Field Hockey loses home-opener to Lyons

SOPHOMORE MIFIELDER KATRINA MCLEOD OUTPACES a Mount Holyoke player in the Engineers 3-1 loss against the Lyons at Harkness Field.

On Saturday, September 6, RPI field hockey hosted Mount Holyoke in its first home game of the season. During the opening 10 minutes of the contest, the Engineers held off a persistent Lyon attack. Holyoke fired four shots off of penalty corners, one that was saved skillfully by Rensselaer freshman goalie Hilary Fiorentino ’18, and another that was blocked by an RPI defender.

Then RPI moved the ball down the field and commenced their own onslaught on the Lyon goal. After, two shots were turned away by Holyoke, RPI freshman forward Jena Nawfel scored in the 15th minute (her first collegiate score) to give the Engineers a 1-0 lead. Sophomore midfielder Colleen Morris assisted the goal.

But, Holyoke dominated the action the rest of the first half. In the 23rd minute, Holyoke midfielder Kirsten Kilburn, scored unassisted, gathering her own miss and rifling a shot past Fiorentino to tie the game at one. Then, a minute later, Holyoke goalie Liz Decesare stopped two shots on goal in a span of eight seconds to maintain the tie. Later, in the 34th minute, Lyon forward Julia Bell scored a goal of her own on a defender, Allison Slysz assist. With mere seconds remaining in the first half, RPI junior midfielder Celia D’Agostino attempted to tie the score, but was turned away, and the half ended with Holyoke leading 2-1.

In the 49th minute, Lyon forward Charlotte Wagner, deftly evaded an Engineer defender and fired the ball into back of the net to give Holyoke a 3-1 lead. In the final 20 minutes, RPI defended its own net valiantly, with Fiorentino making four saves. But RPI’s offense failed to ignite and the game ended 3-1 in favor of Holyoke.

With the win, the Lyons improve to 3-0 on the season while the Engineers fall to 1-2. This Sunday, RPI will travel west to Rochester, NY to take on St. John Fisher in its final non-league game before conference play begins.