NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. – The Merrimack College field hockey team closed out its regular season in spectacular fashion as they registered their fourth straight win and third consecutive win over a top-10 team when they cruised past No. 3 Saint Anselm by a score of 4-1 at Martone-Mejail Field on Senior Day Saturday afternoon.
Score: Merrimack 4, #3 Saint Anselm 1
Records: Merrimack (8-7, 8-4 NE-10) | #3 Saint Anselm (15-3, 10-2 NE-10)
Location: Martone-Mejail |North Andover, Mass.
NE-10 Postseason Outlook:
The top-six programs in the NE-10 standings advance to the NE-10 Championship, with the top-two teams receiving a bye. The three and four seeds will host quarterfinal matchups on Tuesday, Nov. 1.
1. Saint Anselm (10-2)
2. LIU Post (9-3) Three-way tie with STO/ADE; Wins tiebreaker with win vs. STA
3. Stonehill (9-3) H2H vs. ADE
4. Adelphi (9-3)
5. Merrimack (8-4)
6. Assumption (7-5)
How It Happened
- 1′ – All six seniors, after being honored in a pregame ceremony, were featured in Saturday’s starting lineup. Nicole Bradley (Essex, Mass.), Maura Doyle (Merrimac, Mass.), Elizabeth Egan (South Dennis, Mass.), Hannah Magerman (Franklin, Mass.), Kaitlin McCauley (Newburyport, Mass.) and captain Sarah Sparks (Falmouth, Maine) all made their way into the starting 11.
- 6′ – The Warriors opened Saturday’s contest with the third-ranked team in the nation looking like the better team, dominating possession in the first six minutes and earning the first two penalty corners of the game. Merrimack managed four quality scoring chances off those first two corners, but was unable to strike for the early score.
- 13′ – After Merrimack’s early momentum, Saint Anselm would find their own to earn two straight penalty corners. The Hawks would strike on their second shot of the game with a rocket of a shot off a penalty corner that found the back on the net to make it 1-0 Saint Anselm at 12:28 of the first.
- 21′ – The Warriors were able to tie the game up at 1-1 before the halftime thanks to a great individual effort from sophomore Mary McNeil (Canton, Mass.). McNeil would bring the ball all the way downfield into the Hawks’ end, split two defenders and flick a shot over the keeper to tie the score with her seventh of the year.
- 43′ – Merrimack would take its first lead of the game less than eight minutes into the second half. A feed from McNeil would roll through the crease by the keeper and find junior Taylor Simpson (York, Maine) at the far post, who was able to tip in to make it 2-1.
- 48′ – Just five minutes after Simpson gave the Warriors their first lead, Merrimack would quickly see and insurance goal as junior Rylie Hammond (Phillipston, Mass.)would be in the right place at the right time to clean up a rebound after Bradley hit the post on a shot for the second time in the game, giving Merrimack a 3-1 lead.
- 59′ – Just over 10 minutes later, Hammond would replicate her first goal by placing herself right by the Saint Anselm net and putting home another rebound off a Simpson shot to give Merrimack a comfortable three-goal lead at 4-1, where the game would finish.
Inside The Numbers
- Simpson has been red-hot as of late for the Warriors as her goal and assist on Saturday marks her third consecutive multi-point game. She has registered 11 points in the last three games on three goals and an assist.
- Headlined by seniors Egan and Sparks, the Warriors defense played outstanding on Saturday afternoon, allowing just four shots on goal and nine shots total to a team that averaged 16.6 shots per game.
- McNeil’s three-point game Saturday on a goal and assist marks the second straight game for the sophomore with that stat line, as she recorded a goal and assist in Merrimac’s 4-1 win over #5 Stonehill. Her seven assists are tied for second in the conference
- Shots/SOG: MC – 17/10 // STA – 9/4
- Corners: MC – 8 // STA – 3
The fifth-seeded Warriors will play in the NE-10 Quarterfinals on Tuesday at fourth-seeded Adelphi, with first whistle set for 4 p.m.