The Shippensburg University field hockey team had a tough challenge to start off PSAC play when it took the field Tuesday afternoon against West Chester University.
Coming into the matchup, the Rams were ranked No. 1 in the nation for Division 2 field hockey, the Raiders were ranked No. 2. SU was able to overcome the Rams’ late surge and pull out a 4–2 victory.
SU struck first, scoring just four minutes into the start of the game. Senior forward Taylor Bender was credited with the goal. Bender finished off a well-placed ball from Bre White.
White contributed two assists in the Raider victory.
WCU answered with two quick goals, but that is where the scoring stopped for the Rams.
SU fought back and notched one goal right before the half, tying the game at 2–2.
“We were not playing real well,” SU head coach Bertie Landes said. “We just tried to pass the ball well to each other. We just tried to play together a little bit better.”
After halftime the Raiders made some quick adjustments.
“We went into a 3-2-3-2 formation to give us a little bit more depth defensively,” Landes said.
The adjustment proved beneficial for SU. The Raiders were stellar on defense throughout the entire second half. The offense was equally as successful.
SU added two goals during the second half, one by Megan Jett and the other from Lauren Taylor.
Taylor’s goal came in the 67th minute of play, solidifying the Raiders’ victory.
“We are Ship hockey, we like to come back and we fight hard,” Taylor said.
SU was in a battle the entire day. The Raiders did not get down on themselves, which helped propel them to victory.
“We know we are going to have to push harder in practices and everything and we know we just have to go hard and try to beat everyone out there,” freshman Katelyn Grazan said.
SU is off its game until Saturday when it plays at Mansfield University. The game is slated for a 2 p.m. start.