Scrolling Headlines:

UMass field hockey pulls off thrilling overtime victory against Northeastern -

Thursday, September 3, 2015

UMass football fall camp: Kicking competition between Blake Lucas, Mike Caggiano nearing decision -

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Adam Liccardi found guilty in UMass rape trial -

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

UMass football fall camp: Jackson Porter adapting well following switch to wide receiver -

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

UMass football fall camp: Minutemen look for Robert Kitching to anchor defensive line -

Monday, August 31, 2015

Closing arguments delivered in Adam Liccardi rape trial -

Monday, August 31, 2015

Early goals sink UMass men’s soccer in loss to Saint Peter’s -

Monday, August 31, 2015

UMass field hockey splits weekend matches with UNH and BU -

Sunday, August 30, 2015

UMass women’s soccer struck by injuries, struggles offensively as it falls to No. 24 Rutgers -

Sunday, August 30, 2015

UMass men’s soccer drops season opener to Utah Valley in overtime -

Friday, August 28, 2015

UMass football notebook: Jackson Porter moves to WR, UMass schedules 2016 game with South Carolina -

Friday, August 28, 2015

Former UMass student who accused four men of rape in 2012 testifies during trial Friday -

Friday, August 28, 2015

REPORT: UMass football’s Da’Sean Downey faces two assault charges in connection with February fight -

Thursday, August 27, 2015

UMass football Media Day: Catching up with Joe Colton -

Thursday, August 27, 2015

UMass football fall camp: Creating turnovers, forcing mistakes the focus for linebacking corps -

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Jurors hear police interview, read text messages by defendants in third UMass rape trial -

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

‘Living at UMass’ app aims to make move-in weekend a breeze -

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

UMass rape trial halts abruptly, opening statements delivered Tuesday -

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

UMass football fall camp: Jamal Wilson returns from injury with confidence he is ‘main guy’ at running back -

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

UMass football fall camp: Freshmen Sekai Lindsay, Andy Isabella impressing at running back -

Monday, August 24, 2015

Minutewomen begin Atlantic 10 schedule against winless Billikens

Maxwell Sparr/Collegian

After an emotional 2-0 victory over nationally ranked Syracuse last weekend, the focus of the Massachusetts field hockey team is set to do a complete 180 degree turn as it matches up against winless Saint Louis.

The win against the Orange marked the second time this season the Minutewomen have defeated a Top 10 team, and the second time they have defeated a team in the Big East conference, a perennial field hockey powerhouse.

Many teams will experience such a huge win, and the “hangover” or emotions from the game will filter through practice and into the following week’s game. UMass coach Justine Sowry said her team has the ability to play with the best in the nation, but is taking special care to stay consistent on a week-to-week basis.

“We have the ability to play with the best when everything is perfect,” Sowry said. “But then the next game we lack that consistency. I think that’s from how young and inexperienced our team is. Our senior leadership has provided consistency with certain performances but its getting freshman and those playing a lot of minutes consistency within the structure.”

Despite her team’s impressive performance against Syracuse last week, Sowry said the squad is taking one game at a time and trying to focus on perfecting the minor details of play in order to stay strong against a 0-12 Billiken team.

“We’re not even looking at Saint Louis’ record,” Sowry said. “I think there were times last year where we didn’t refocus for the A-10 competition and went into the weekend not focused on the task at hand. Our job is to come together and be strong in the Atlantic 10 and win that. We’re just going to take one game at a time.”

After a disappointing loss in the semifinals of the A-10 tournament last year, UMass is taking no chances this time around. Sowry said her team is taking things slow and trying to be methodical in its approach. The most important games of the season, in terms of advancing to national playoffs, come against teams from the A-10, and Sowry says she is not looking past the week’s opponent.

“What we’re trying to do is learn lessons from previous years,” Sowry said. “We looked ahead last year and it hurt us because we didn’t take that opening weekend seriously. We were put in a difficult place. This year we are literally thinking one game at a time, and the rest will take care of itself.”

Slightly more than halfway through the 2010 season, the Minutewomen stand 5-6 overall and play six of their last seven games against A-10 opponents. Sowry said that aside from the three seniors (Katie Kelly, Makaela Potts, Jamie Bourazeris) and goalkeeper Alesha Widdall, she has been tremendously pleased with the entire team’s effort throughout the season. She highlighted a few players she has taken particular notice of, but stressed that each player has contributed in some shape or form each week.

“In any game that we’ve played there has been someone who’s stood out,” Sowry said. “I’m pretty happy overall with many of them. If we’re talking about the amount of minutes and consistency there are players like Hannah Prince who has played nearly every minute and I think that’s pretty impressive as a freshman to be a defender. I think Alexa Sikailis has performed exceptionally against good opponents. Then at various times we’ve had solid performances from the freshman on the forward lines as well.”

Sowry also noted two key returners from last season who have used their experience and knowledge to help the team this year.

“There are two [players], one of which would have to be Nicole Cordero on the forward line,” Sowry said. “I think she’s really stepped it up a notch with her leadership, her work ethic and the punch she’s been able to provide. And somewhat of an unsung hero has been Nikki Panciacco. She stepped up as our starting center midfielder and has played against some of the best players in the country and has done a great job. It’s critical that she performs tough everyday and she’s been able to do that for us.”

The Minutewomen will begin A-10 play against the Billikens at 6:00 p.m., Oct. 9 at Garber field

Michael Wood can be reached at mcwood@student.umass.edu.

Leave A Comment