Field Hockey Falters in the Second Half, Loses to Pacific
The Missouri State field hockey team could not hold a halftime lead, and dropped its season opener 2-1 to the University of the Pacific.
Senior Alyssa Hile (Wildwood, Mo.) opened the scoring in the 25th minute of the first half. Off a penalty corner, senior Melissa Lantz (Wildwood, Mo.) ripped a shot that the Tigers saved but could not control. The rebound went right to Sarah Cusick (Jr., San Diego, Calif.), who set up Hile for the goal. It was the first assist of Cusick's career.
The score stayed 1-0 until shortly after intermission. But Pacific senior Kim Keyawa proved to be too much for the Bears in the second half. Keyawa's first goal tied the game four minutes into the second half, and she netted the deciding goal with just over 11 minutes remaining. The tough Tiger defense held it from there.
The Bears had their opportunities. Hile had another shot on goal with less than four minutes to play, but Pacific goalkeeper Ashlee Schlesier made a big save to preserve the lead. In all, both MSU and Pacific had six shots on goal.
The most impressive player of the night may have been MSU's freshman goalkeeper, Steph Anderson (Pittsburgh, Pa.). With sophomore keeper Mackenzie Crawford (Dublin, Ohio) out with mononucleosis, Anderson was pressed into starting action in her first collegiate game. She held the Tigers scoreless for nearly 40 minutes and finished with four saves.
"Steph did very well," said Callahan. "She made a save on a corner that not many people would have made. We were very happy with her play."
Despite the loss, head coach Dawn Callahan was satisfied with her team's effort.
"We fought hard," said Callahan. "The team did the things we asked them to do. A few adjustments and we will be all right."
The team continues its west coast trip Sunday at Stanford. Game time is 2:00 p.m. CT.