The UConn women’s field hockey team beat UMass 8-1 on Wednesday afternoon at George J. Sherman Family Sports Complex. It was the Huskies’ first game since being ranked No. 1 in the NFHCA coaches poll, but the Huskies were clearly not satisfied.
Within the first 15 minutes, UConn (10-0) had built a 3-0 lead on a UMass team that was seeking revenge for their loss to the Huskies earlier in the season. Goals by Amanda Collins, Casey Umstead and Charlotte Veitner gave UConn some room to breathe.
UMass answered with a goal of their own, and Veitner scored her second goal of the half with 10 minutes remaining. At halftime, the Huskies were winning 4-1.
Veitner scored twice more in the second half, while Amelia Iacobucci and Barbara van den Hooogen added a goal each for the final score of 8-1.
The Huskies put on a great display of passing throughout the game. During a 3-on-1 breakaway in the second half, Veitner scored her third goal of the evening from right in front of the net after some clinical passes between Svea Boker and Amanda Collins.
“It was so unselfish for those players to pass instead of holding it,” UConn head coach Nancy Stevens said. “That doesn’t occur very much in field hockey, when you have a 3-on-1. So it’s really good we did score.”
In another brilliant goal, the Huskies showed that their passing isn’t just executed in the open field. Veitner lined up to take a penalty corner, and on what looked to be a designed play, Umstead fed the ball right back to an open Veitner for the goal.
“The mantra really is, ‘Put your teammates first, and play for each other,’” Stevens said. “I think when you have a team culture that emphasizes that, then you’re going to have unselfish play.”
UConn didn’t let up, and continued playing unselfishly all game. In total, six of the Huskies’ eight goals were assisted on the evening.
“I think that’s the way you need to play,” Stevens said. “It’s hard for teams to stop you. We have multiple scorers, so the goals are coming from different people every game. Right now, things couldn’t be better.”
UConn will look to continue their perfect season on Friday when they travel to Providence for a conference matchup.
Josh Buser is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.