Bowdoin Earns 3-0 Win Over MIT in NCAA Third Round
Courtesy Bowdoin Sports Information
BRUNSWICK, Maine - For the sixth time in the last seven seasons, the Bowdoin College field hockey team advanced to the national semifinals, this time following a 3-0 win over MIT in the Third Round of the NCAA Tournament Sunday at Ryan Field.
The defending national champions advance to play rival Middlebury in the NCAA Semifinals next Saturday at 11:00 a.m. at Nichols College in Dudley, Mass. Bowdoin (19-0) has won three of the last four Division III championships (2007, 2008, 2010).
The Engineers finish a fantastic campaign with a record of 19-4, setting a new program record for victories in a season.
Bowdoin withstood early pressure from MIT, who mustered several sustained possessions but could not find a shot on goal. The Polar Bears broke through with less than ten minutes remaining in the opening frame, when Ella Curren blasted a hard shot from the left wing that was tipped in front by Cathleen Smith. The Engineers responded with a handful of scoring chances late in the period, the best of which came off the stick of Molly Duffy, whose shot from the left side was swept away by Bowdoin defender Kassey Matoin.
The Polar Bears came out firing in the second half, peppering the MIT net with several strong chances. The pressure paid off at 53:10, when Katie Riley accepted a feed in front from Liz Clegg and ripped a turnaround shot that slipped inside the right post for a 2-0 Bowdoin lead. Olivia King whistled a shot from the top of the circle that Clegg tipped in front, giving the hosts an insurmountable 3-0 lead with 11:01 to play.
Goaltender Kayla Lessard and the Bowdoin defense took it from there, permitting just seven shots on the afternoon with Lessard making three saves. The Polar Bears have allowed just three goals in their last 13 matches dating back to October 5.
MIT netminders Casey Landry (two saves, one goal against) and Jenna Klein (ten saves, two goals against) each played a half for the Engineers. Bowdoin finished with a 23-7 advantage in shots and 8-3 lead in penalty corners.
The Polar Bears and Panthers will face each other for the third time this season after a pair of hotly-contested meetings earlier this year. Bowdoin took a 3-2 overtime decision against Middlebury on September 24 and then defeated the Panthers last Sunday in the NESCAC title match, 2-1. The teams have played twice prior in NCAA play, with Bowdoin winning in the 2008 quarterfinals and in the 2007 title game.
They will be joined by The College of New Jersey and Ursinus, who advanced out of their respective regionals and will play at 2:00 p.m. next Saturday in the other semifinal match. The 2011 NCAA Championship Final is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. on Sunday, November 20.