The Lafayette Leopards only took one shot against the field hockey team during two overtime periods. It was all they needed.
After overcoming a 1-0 deficit, the Owls were bested in double overtime when Lafayette sophomore Maria Machalick’s shot deflected off a Temple defender and found the back of the goal.
The Owls faced adversity on defense in the first half, allowing one score on seven shots-on-goal. They struggled early offensively, but ultimately tied the game in the second half before losing in overtime, 2-1.
“I’m not disappointed in the effort, I’m just disappointed in our execution,” coach Amanda Janney said. “We had plenty of opportunities to put the ball in the net more than once, and we weren’t able to capitalize.”
Lafayette dominated early on, controlling the ball for much of the first half before sophomore midfielder Deanna DiCroce scored off a penalty corner with 6 minutes, 8 seconds left. Senior goalkeeper Sarah Dalrymple made two saves on seven shots-on-goal in the first half, which both equaled the total saves and shots-on-goal she faced in the previous two games combined.
“I think that our organization would have helped us out a little bit,” Dalrymple said. “But, overall, we got our game together in the second half.”
The Owls’ offense came alive in the second half, where they controlled the ball for the majority of the period and had eight shots-on-goal. Co-Atlantic Ten Conference Player of the Week junior forward Bridget Settles tied the game 5 minutes into the half when she scored her team-leading fifth goal on a rebound off of her own breakaway shot.
The Leopards threatened 22 minutes into the second half with a series of four consecutive corner shots, but the Owls’ defense stiffened. Sophomore forward Katie Briglia and junior defender Carissa Young each registered blocked shots and Dalrymple made two saves.
However, Temple had its own share of blown opportunities in the second half. The Owls failed to score on seven shots-on-goal and could not take advantage of six second-half corner shots.
“We just need to realize that we need to take advantage of every opportunity that we have,” Dalrymple said. “We outshot them, and we just couldn’t get it in the net, so we just need to take advantage of our opportunities.”
The first overtime saw a neutralized battle for possession and strong defense from both sides. Temple had the lone shot-on-goal of the period.
The second overtime was much of the same thing before Lafayette moved the ball into the circle and Machalick executed a spin-around backhand that deflected off a Temple defender and skidded into the goal.
“Lafayette had one shot on goal in the two overtimes, and they executed it,” Dalrymple said.
Despite the loss, the Owls are still off to their best start in nine seasons. They are 4-1 and currently sit atop the A-10 standings. Regardless of the team’s early success, Janney remains an advocate of improvement.
“The things that we’re saying is just to try and take care of the details,” Janney said. “We’re right there. We just need to take care of the ball a little bit better.”
“We just need to play our game and play to the level that we do and play to the potential that we have,” Dalrymple added.
The Owls play again at 3:30 p.m. Sept. 17 at home against Delaware.
Joey Cranney can be reached at email@example.com.