By Robert Dickey
SPRINGFIELD– Springfield college field hockey’s offense rushed into the yellow circle like a stampede as the game clock approached triple zeroes. Senior Hannah Boylan, playing in her last guaranteed home game, elevated the ball with an attempt to find the back of the goal. The shot went wide but was tipped in by sophomore Ashley Frank, adding another tally in the assist column for Boylan with just 31 seconds left to play in the game.
The goal scored by Frank was her second in the final 2:10 of the game, both which came as insurance as the Pride smoked Wheaton College by a final score of 10-2 on Saturday in front of a large crowd at Stagg Field.
Saturday marked senior day, and the last guaranteed home game for the four seniors on this years team. Boylan, along with fellow seniors Emily Knobel, Amanda Nusbaum and Emmalie Drake all played well against Wheaton in front of large crowds of family and friends.
Nusbaum was the star of the game as she tallied two goals in her last home game and added three assists to her already D-III leading total.
“Senior day is different. We try to come out like its a regular game but there’s definitely an extra edge there,” said Nusbaum on her incredible performance.
The game against Wheaton was an important league win for the Pride who are currently in a tie for second place in the NEWMAC. Springfield is hoping to host a playoff game at Stagg Field and winning on Saturday was an important first step to achieving their goals.
“The more wins we can get the better position we’ll be in for playoffs,” stated Nusbaum.
Head coach Melissa Sharpe has led the team to another impressive season and shared her thoughts on what Saturday’s win meant to her team.
“I think the energy and intensity of the younger players was really special today, they really were trying their hearts out for these seniors,” said Sharpe.
Sharpe was undoubtedly correct about her non-seniors showing up to play. Freshman Kyra Ashe scored three goals in the Pride’s blowout win, setting the tone early with the first goal of the game. Other goal scorers included sophomore Taylor Low, freshman Holly Rivers and junior Taylor Conley.
Looking ahead, the Pride travel to Salem State on Tuesday followed by their last conference game at MIT next Saturday.
“We just gotta go in and we just gotta have that mentality that it’s gonna be a huge day. We have to come out as prepared and as energetic as we did today and put ourselves in a good spot for the postseason,” said Sharpe.
The Pride are in a good spot heading into the NEWMAC postseason and hope that Saturday’s win will give them the momentum they need to go far.
Featured photo courtesy of Springfield College Athletics