By George Tatoris
In the final regular season game of her collegiate career, senior defender Shannon Cowles scored her first Lions goal against the Eastern University Eagles.
Cowles’s goal contributed to a 7-0 shutout against the Eagles on Saturday, Oct. 29. It was a fitting end to a week dedicated to the senior Lions.
On Tuesday, Oct. 25, the field hockey team honored its graduating class for Senior Night as they prepared to play their last regular home season game against Albright College.
Besides Cowles, defenders Lexi Smith and Alexa Magnotta; forward/midfielders Jaclyn Douglas and Danielle Andreula; forward/defender Ally Pennypacker and goalkeeper Kelly Schlupp were the seven honorees. The College won the matchup, 7-1.
Over the last four years, these seven saw plenty of success on the field — they won 71 games, two consecutive New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) titles in 2014 and 2015 and brought home an NCAA title in 2014.
Any doubts to the team’s continued success were quickly thwarted by freshman defender Cayla Andrews, who collected a rebound just six minutes into the contest and arced the ball over Albright goalkeeper Aileen Taylor’s head for the College’s first goal of the game.
The College continued to dominate throughout the first half, scoring four more goals in the span of just nine minutes.
At 19:38, Smith dribbled up to the net and reverse swept it in for the second goal of the game.
At 24:01, she received the ball on a corner play and sent it junior defender Jackie Schwartz for goal number three.
Less than a minute later, the ball bounced off the post and Douglas flicked it in for the fourth goal of the game.
At 27:58, Schwartz crossed the ball to sophomore forward Taylor Barrett, who found the back of the net with ease for her first goal of the season. At the end of the period, the score was 5-0 in favor of the College.
Albright showed steely determination with a goal just two minutes into the second half, but the vigor quickly wore off as they failed to land another shot for the rest of the game.
Meanwhile, the College continued to break through Albright’s defense. Sophomore midfielder/defender Sidney Padilla turned a pass from Schwartz into goal number six, and Barrett scored her second goal of the season to close the game, 7-1.
Andrews opened the scoring early on Saturday with a little help from Smith just four minutes into the first half.
A flurry of Lions goals lasting four minutes brought the score to 4-0. Junior forward Elizabeth Morrison floated the ball over the goalkeeper’s head for the second Lions goal, and Andrews scored her third goal of the week just three minutes later.
Cowles’s goal closed out the first half.
Smith opened scoring in the second half. Following two back-to-back shots, she found the back of the net and Schwartz earned the assist.
Douglas scored off an assist from Andrews soon after, and Morrison closed out the scoring off an assist from Smith.
After a month of see-sawing due to illness and injury — first winning a game, then losing another — the Lions turned things around to win all of their games in the month of October. They end their regular season riding a 10-game win streak as they turn their attention to the NJAC tournament.