NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. – The No. 9 Merrimack College field hockey program could not have drawn up a better start to the 2018 campaign, as the Warriors dominated visiting Seton Hill in the season opener by a 9-0 tally on Saturday afternoon at Merrimack Stadium. Junior Jessica Palmerled the way with three goals and six points, both career-high figures.
Score: Merrimack 9, Seton Hill 0
Records: Merrimack (1-0) | Seton Hill (0-1)
Location: Merrimack Stadium | North Andover, Mass.
- MC (1-0) – Senior Mary McNeil opened the scoring by unwinding a shot from the middle of the circle that was tipped by the goalkeeper and buried at the back post by sophomore Colleen Ellis.
- MC (2-0) – A shot from junior Miranda Judd eventually was tipped in front by freshman Juliane Ohmen, and the ball would dribble by the defense and in to make it 2-0.
- MC (3-0) – After a shot was sent on net from the right side, the SHU goalkeeper made an initial save, but Palmer hopped on the rebound and eventually pushed it home from the right side for her first of three goals.
- MC (4-0) – McNeil fired a reverse stick drive while falling in the middle of the circle and somehow snuck it through traffic and in for her first of the afternoon.
- MC (5-0) – Sophomore Sarah Johnson came away with the ball and entered the circle from the left side, punched through a defender and chipped it through for her first of the day.
- MC (6-0) – Judd wound and fired from the edge of the left circle, where it would find Palmer for the tip-in goal.
- MC (7-0) – Judd picked up another assist with a centering feed from the left side, as Ellis would tap in that pass at the back post.
- MC (8-0) – During a penalty corner sequence, Merrimack moved the ball from left to right, and Samantha Bartush would set up Judd for the latter’s first goal of the game. She connected with a pretty shot from the top right of the circle.
- MC (9-0) – With the offense in transition, McNeil tapped the ball ahead to Palmer, whose chip shot from the right flank beat the keeper on the left side.
- Bringing in just one career goal and two career points in 27 games heading into the contest, Palmer had herself an afternoon, posting her first career hat trick to lead the offense.
- Ellis also set a single-game high with her two goals and four points, representing the Warriors’ only other multi-goal getter.
- Entering Saturday with only four points in her previous 35 games as a Warrior, Judd contributed on both ends of the field; her three assists and five total points were both career-bests, and she also had the game’s lone defensive save.
- McNeil also had four points on a goal and a helper, while Ohmen – a rookie – and Johnson netted their first-ever goals on Saturday.
- While the offense was busy putting up fireworks, senior Katharina Ohmen was rock solid in net when called upon, finishing with four saves to pick up her fifth career shutout.
Notes and Notables
- The nine goals were the most ever in a season opener for the program and most since scoring 12 goals in a 12-1 win against Southern Connecticut last Oct. 7, 2017.
- Merrimack put 24 of its 36 shots on net, outshooting the Griffins by a 36-8 margin on the day.
- The Warriors also had a 15-4 edge in penalty corners.
The Warriors will return to Merrimack Stadium when Merrimack hosts No. 2 East Stroudsburg at 1 p.m. It marks the first of consecutive home games next weekend, with the Warriors also hosting Limestone on Sunday (1 p.m.).