PLYMOUTH, N.H. –The field is now set for this weekend’s Little East Conference Field Hockey Championships, hosted by Plymouth State College at Arold Field.
The top-seeded and defending champion Panthers, who received a bye in Tuesday’s opening round after capturing their second consecutive LEC regular season
title, will play the first semi-final game Friday (Oct. 26) at 12:00 p.m. against fourth-seeded Eastern Connecticut. The Warriors earned the right to play PSC with a 2-1
victory over fifth-seeded Bridgewater State on Tuesday.
The second semi-final on Friday at 2:30 p.m. matches second-seeded Southern Maine against sixth-seeded Worcester State. The Huskies blanked
seventh-seeded Westfield State 2-0 in Tuesday’s opening round, while the Lancers pulled a 1-0 upset over third-seeded Keene State.
The two semifinal winners meet Saturday at 12 noon at Arold Field for the LEC Championship and the conference’s automatic bid to the NCAA Division III
Plymouth State, 12-4 overall, brings a nine-game winning streak into the weekend. The Panthers finished 9-1 in conference play this season, and are 19-1 in LEC
regular season games the past two years. The Panthers hosted last year’s tournament, defeating Worcester State 2-0 in the semifinals and Keene State in the
championship game, 1-0.
Southern Maine will bring a 12-7 record into the weekend, while Eastern Connecticut is now 11-7 and Worcester State 14-6.
The Panthers use a balanced offensive attack, led by the seniors Megan Fournier (East Waterboro, Maine) and Sacha Jackson (Sangerville, Maine) and juniors
Melanie McAvey (Grafton, Mass.) and Katie Dodge (Sanbornton, N.H.). Senior Danielle Cardin (Southampton, Mass.) is also a valuable contributor, and junior Jill
Matteson (Chatham, Mass.) has provided a spark off the bench.
The defense is anchored by sophomore goalie Ellen Ward (Thorndike, Maine), who has a 1.12 goals against average. The other keys to the Panther defense,
which has allowed only 18 goals in 16 games, are senior Robin Hartman (Santa Maria, Cal.), junior Kristle Wheeler (Brandon, Vt.), sophomore Whitney Swaffield
(Wolfeboro, N.H.) and freshman Annie Metz (North Chelmsford, Mass.