Field Hockey: Huskies gear up for weekend road trip in upstate NY 


Last weekend’s showing is one the UConn women’s field hockey team will try and put in their rearview mirror, and they have an excellent opportunity to do so this weekend. The Huskies will hit the road this weekend, first stopping in Ithaca, New York to play Cornell University. On Sunday, they will visit Syracuse University in search of snapping their undefeated record. 

It seems that every weekend, the Huskies are in a scrap for their lives, and this weekend will be no exception; Cornell will be a formidable opponent, as evident by their 10-7 finish last season. In their 2022 campaign, the Big Red Bears knocked off some talented teams, including the University of Louisville, who were ranked No. 4 at the time. Despite losing 2-1 to their Ivy League rival Princeton, Cornell gave them a run for their money as they went toe to toe with the No. 8 ranked team in the country. Interestingly, the program squared off with Syracuse earlier this year. In that contest, the Orangemen handed the Big Red Bears their first loss in the team’s opening contest. UConn will be Cornell’s second game of the young season. This fixture is more exciting since these teams have not played each other in a significant period of time; hence, it will be harder to create a game plan for, and we will see the pure talent of the Huskies on display and how they react to an unfamiliar setting. In fact, when these two teams last played, some of  UConn’s team members weren’t born yet. In that contest, which took place on Oct. 24, 2004, Connecticut had their way with a rare 6-0 blowout. While a 6-0 blowout will likely not happen on Friday, it is still a crucial game for the Huskies to steal. UConn has gotten off to a slow 1-3 start, and considering its opponents on Sunday are just as talented, if not more, stealing a win in Ithaca is of tremendous importance. 

To cap off their weekend road trip, the Huskies will make a hour-and-a-half trek to Syracuse, New York to square off against the No. 7 Orangemen. If they wish to succeed in their Sunday showdown, the Huskies need all parts of their game to click. Not only can Syracuse play good defense, but they have demonstrated that they can light up the scoreboard from the smallest mistakes. Syracuse has outscored their opponents by a whopping 24-5 margin, highlighted by a 9-1 beating of the University of Vermont. We have seen the Huskies struggle to mount significant offense at times during the season, and this will be the deciding factor, as it is not realistic that they will shut out the prolific Orangemen offense. Only two seasons ago, these schools squared off with each other. In that contest, Syracuse was the last team standing, defeating UConn 5-3 in yet another significant offensive showing by the opposition. While hearing Syracuse’s résumé makes it sound like UConn has no chance at victory, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Connecticut has gone toe to toe with the best teams in the country this year in each contest, making it a game until the end. The Huskies have also had a brutal schedule thus far, as each of their three losses comes from a nationally ranked opponent. 

Undoubtedly, this will be a challenging weekend for UConn, but it is as talented as its New York adversaries, and winning at least one of these games puts the Huskies back on track to compete for top-dog status in not only the Big East – but the nation.  

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