SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. - Behind four second-half goals, the Mount Holyoke College field hockey team bested Wheaton College, 5-2, in the Battle of the Lyons on Saturday. With the victory, MHC moves to 9-4 overall and 4-2 in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC), while Wheaton slips to 4-8 with an 0-5 conference mark.
Locked in a 1-1 tie after the opening half of action, Mount Holyoke came alive in the second stanza with two straight goals. Junior midfielder Mirjam Keochakian (Hamburg, Germany/Deerfield Academy) made it a 2-1 contest at 44:43 after she corralled the ball off a penalty corner injection from classmate and captain Colby Newsham (Harvard, Mass./Bromfield School). Taking a step into the circle, Keochakian blasted a shot down the middle into the right corner past Wheaton keeper Riley Thompson (Fairfield, Conn./Fairfield Ludlowe).
Mount Holyoke pushed the advantage to two goals (3-1) less than five minutes later, this time in reverse order from their second tally. On the penalty corner, Newsham once again injected to the top of the circle. Keochakian fired another shot in, which was then tipped by Newsham at the left post for the Lyons third of the contest at 49:23.
Wheaton battled back, closing the gap to one (3-2) at 55:48. With play jammed up in front of the MHC goal, senior midfielder Hannah Southard (Gorham, Maine/Gorham) sent a cross through traffic at the goal mouth. The ball was then tipped in at the right corner by first year midfielder Hannah Arkin (New Hyde Park, N.Y./New Hyde Park) past the reach of MHC goalie Morgan Turner (Chester, N.J./West Morris Mendham).
The homestanding Lyons added to their advantage at 63:46 as senior captain and midfielder Kathryn Rawson (Old Town, Maine/Old Town) sent a shot in toward goal that saw junior midfielder Kristina Ramsden (Florence, Mass./Northampton) knock in at the right post. Mount Holyoke closed out the game's scoring less than four minutes later as senior captain Sophie Perekslis (Millerton, N.Y./Berkshire School) hammered in a loose ball in front.
Senior captain and forward Kaitlin Braz (Tolland, Conn./East Catholic) opened the game's scoring at 10:13, redirecting in a shot from Keochakian. Wheaton knotted the game at 1-all on a great effort in front. Arkin sent the ball in on goal, catching Turner out of position. MHC was unable to make the defensive save as sophomore forward Karin Dion (Cumberland, R.I./Cumberland) swatted it in past the reach of a diving Turner.
Mount Holyoke held a 26-5 advantage in shots for the contest, also owning a 24-5 edge in penalty corners for the contest. Turner earned her ninth victory of the year with two saves, while Thompson shouldered the loss with 12 saves on the afternoon. Additionally, senior defender Hailey Kohler (Flemington, N.J./Hunterdon Central Regional) and first year blueliner Melissa Jernakoff (Wilmington, Del./The Tatnall School) each made a defensive save.
Both squads are back in action on Tuesday as Mount Holyoke welcomes Western New England for a 7pm non-conference match, while Wheaton is at Babson for a 6pm NEWMAC contest.
Photo courtesy of David Bell.