Last Saturday, the 15th-ranked Hopkins field hockey team opened Centennial Conference play with a win against the Bryn Mawr College Owls. With two second half goals, the Blue Jays took the 2-0 shutout victory.
“The win was a whole team effort. Everybody worked really hard to keep the intensity of the game up and that was why we outplayed them,” junior goalie Jodie Baris said.
Both teams were strong defensively in the first half, as the game was still scoreless by the end of the half. The Jays and the Owls only had a combined seven shots in the half.
Sophomore midfielder Seema Sajjan commented on the win.
“It was our first Conference win of the season so that was really exciting! The pace of the game was slow the first half, and we struggled to execute the basics, which was a little bit frustrating and stressful,” Sajjan said.
However, Hopkins came out with offensive fire at the start of the second. Sajjan passed in a corner just two minutes into the half. Junior midfielder Katie McErlean snatched Sajjan’s pass and took a shot at the cage that found the back of the net, giving the Blue Jays their first lead of the game. The score read 1-0.
“Bryn Mawr improved so much from last year, and they had their sticks down the whole game. We needed to come out stronger the second half, and we did just that. We always talk about playing Hopkins hockey, and during the second half we made adjustments and picked up the pace of the game,” Sajjan said.
The Jays did not stop there. After a scramble play in front of Bryn Mawr’s cage, sophomore forward Michaela Corvi got a hold of the loose ball and shot over Bryn Mawr’s goalie, advancing the Blue Jay lead to 2-0.
Corvi’s goal not only secured the victory for the Jays but also marks her team-leading third goal on the season.
McErlean’s goal was her first of the season. She is one of six Blue Jays who have scored at least one goal this season.
“In the second half, Katie and Michaela both made tremendous efforts to find the back of the cage. Both of them make every last chance effort to earn the ball, and it was really noticeable on Saturday,” Sajjan said.
The Owls were unable to rally for goals in the remaining minutes, as the Hopkins defense proved to be too dominant for the Owls to overcome. Leading the defensive effort was Baris, who made three saves throughout the game. This game also marks her second shutout of the season.
“Defensively, there was great communication and we executed our basic skills really well to limit Bryn Mawr’s attacking opportunities,” Baris said.
Offensively, Hopkins outshot the Owls 10-4, although the Owls had a 9-7 advantage in corners. And, after Saturday’s match-up, the Blue Jays improved their all-time record against Bryn Mawr to 25-0-1 and extended their shutout streak versus the Owls to four. The Jays also improved their record this season to 4-0, which is the best start since the 2009 team also began the season 4-0.
Hopkins looks to continue their winning streak as they progress into the midst of Centennial Conference play, as the team looks to defend their regular season title from last season.
“Our focus as we move into our Conference games is to execute in the circle and score when we have chances,” Baris said.
In addition to excelling in the Centennial Conference, the Jays are looking to earn a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2008.
“Overall, we want to play to the best of our ability during games and improve every time we step on the field. We’re hoping to have a successful Conference season and make it to NCAAs,” Baris said.
The Blue Jays return to Homewood Field on Saturday, Sept. 22 to face-off against another Centennial Conference foe, the Washington College Shorewomen.