LEXINGTON, Ky.—The Transylvania University field hockey team fell to the visiting Wittenberg University Tigers on a chilly and rainy Wednesday afternoon. Despite a strong offensive performance, the Pioneers dropped the match, 5-4.
Wittenberg jumped out to an early 2-0 lead after scoring goals in the 5th and 16th minutes. Transy got one back in the 28th minute on a goal from the stick of junior midfielder Maddie King. The Tigers expanded the lead before the end of the first half and after the first 35 minutes, the score stood at 3-1 in favor of Wittenberg.
Two early second half goals by Wittenberg in the 39th and 44th minutes widened the margin to 5-1 and looked to cruise in with an easy victory. After a late timeout and a valiant effort from the Pioneers in the closing minutes of the match, the margin became much smaller.
Sophomore forward Jessie Wilson tacked on goals in the 62nd and 70th minutes, while senior midfielder Sara Clark added a goal in the 63rd minute. "At the timeout, I challenged the girls. They responded with three goals in 12 minutes," said head coach Sarah Humphries. I couldn't have asked for more.
Despite the losing result, Humphries saw plenty of positive takeaways from the match. "I was pleased with the effort of the team. We were connecting our passes and maintained good possession," she said. "Sarah Wilson had her best game of the season on defense and really fought hard all 70 minutes. Jessie Wilson performed well on the attacking end with her two goals."
Transylvania attacked the cage selectively in the match, putting all seven shots taken on goal. Wittenberg, on the other hand, applied consistent and intense pressure on the Pioneers' defense, taking 19 shots and putting 18 on target. Senior goalkeeper Sara Aschbacher and junior goalie Katie Jackel combined to record saves on 12 saves for the Pioneers.
With the loss, the Pioneers drop to 1-10 on the season. Transy will travel to Sewanee this Saturday to continue their Southern Athletic Association competition.