American Rolls to 4-0 Victory Over Lehigh in Patriot League Opener

American Rolls to 4-0 Victory Over Lehigh in Patriot League Opener

Senior Grace Wilson scored a pair of goals to lead the American University field hockey team to a 4-0 victory over Patriot League foe Lehigh on Saturday afternoon.

With the win, the Eagles improved to 5-2 overall and 1-0 in the Patriot League, while Lehigh dropped to 1-6 overall and 0-1 in the league.

American got on the board early, as Wilson converted a penalty corner less than two minutes into the game. The Eagles added to their advantage with 26:00 on the clock in the first half, when senior Carly Atchison rebounded a saved shot to put the ball past Lehigh goalkeeper Julia Ward.

The score remained at 2-0 until junior Grace Parke got on the board nine minutes into the second half with a goal directly in front of the net. The Eagles continued to put on the pressure on both sides of the field, capped off by Wilson’s second goal off a penalty corner with just under 10 minutes to play.

AU controlled the tempo of the game, outshooting Lehigh 18-4, including a 12-0 edge in the second half alone. The Eagles also attempted nine penalty corners, compared to just two for the Mountain Hawks.

American’s defense held solid throughout, posting its fifth shutout of the season. AU’s five shutouts are tied for the most in the nation this season.

“We wanted to make sure we had a solid defensive effort and I was really proud of the deep defense to be able to keep the shutout,” said American head coach Steve Jennings. “Offensively, we strung together some really strong periods of play. Obviously, we would have liked to finish a couple more of our chances, but there’s no doubt that we created a lot of offensive opportunities.

“[In the second half] we changed our lineup pressure, which was able to get us some more turnovers in their zone and get us on the counterattack. Once you can get on the counterattack, there’s a lot more space. I think that was pretty much a key to the second half.”

The Eagles return to action tomorrow, with a non-conference home game versus 20th-ranked Princeton at 2:00 p.m.