It could not have been a better opening weekend for the UConn field hockey team, as they took down two ranked opponents on back-to-back days to open the season in Stanford.
The No. 4 Huskies notched a dominant 4-1 victory over No. 15 Northwestern on Saturday to kick things off and followed it with a 3-2 comeback win over No. 21 Stanford the next day.
Freshman Marie Auer didn’t take long to make a splash in a UConn uniform, scoring two goals in her collegiate debut on Saturday. Auer, who earned the start, gave the Huskies a 1-0 lead at the 8:04 mark of the first quarter off an assist from Jessica Dembrowski. She added the dagger in the third quarter, extending the lead to four goals.
It was an even bigger weekend for senior Antonia Tiedtke, who got the game-winner to knock off the Cardinals on Sunday and added a pair of assists this weekend, earning her Big East Defensive Player of the Week honors.
It was a show of dominance on Saturday against No. 15 Northwestern, as the Huskies never trailed, holding a three-goal lead at the half. Besides Auer’s two-piece, sophomore Abby Gooderham and senior Svea Boker each found the back of the net. Goalkeeper Cheyenne Sprecher allowed just a single goal past her as time expired in the third quarter.
The Huskies had an 18-7 advantage in shots and 7-4 in penalty corners, converting one of those seven opportunities.
It was a very different story on Sunday, as UConn completely dominated on paper, but trailed host Stanford until Tiedtke put the Huskies ahead late in the fourth quarter. The Cardinal jumped out to a 2-0 lead, the second of which at the 16:39 mark.
It was a short-lived two-goal advantage, as Boker answered just 27 seconds later with her second goal of the season. UConn trailed 2-1 at the half, but the momentum had clearly shifted in favor of the Huskies.
Dembrowski continued her busy weekend, knotting things up late in the third on a corner. By now, the Huskies had firm control of the game, but the game remained deadlocked at 2-2 until more than halfway through the final quarter. Then came Tiedtke’s heroics, scooping up a shot that hit the crossbar and whipping it past the Stanford keeper.
Despite the drama, the scoresheet was not even close. The Huskies closed with a 20-6 advantage in shots and 8-2 in corners.
With two ranked victories under its belt, UConn makes its home debut next weekend, but things certainly don’t get easier. The Huskies welcome No. 19 Rutgers to town on Friday, followed by No. 6 Harvard on Sunday, both at the George J. Sherman Family Sports Complex.
Andrew Morrison is the sports editor for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.