Penn State field hockey overwhelms Temple with offense

Freshman midfielder Nienke Oerlemans attempts to center the ball against Penn State on Friday at Howarth Field | MATTHEW ALTEA / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Senior goalkeeper Chloe Johnson launched to her right to prevent a Penn State goal early in the first half of Friday’s game at Howarth Field.

Johnson said the early save gave her confidence for the rest of the game. Her confidence was  key to keeping the Owls within reach of the Nittany Lions. Johnson, who made a career-high 19 saves, called that diving save her most impressive play of the game.

Despite the defensive effort, Temple University (0-3) lost, 4-0, to the Nittany Lions, the No. 6 team in the National Field Hockey Coaches Association poll. Penn State scored three of its goals during a 10-minute span in the second half.

The Nittany Lions attempted 42 shots, 26 of which were on goal. Sophomore back Dani Batze recorded three defensive saves.

“We were hoping it was going to be a strong defensive game for us to put our best foot forward in that regard,” coach Marybeth Freeman said.

The Owls have not scored since the first half of their opening game of the season against the University of California, Davis. They’ve played 190 minutes, 32 seconds without scoring and have been outscored 10-0 in that span.

“We all need to improve in every area of the field,” Freeman said.

Against Penn State, Temple only attempted one shot. The try went wide from the stick of junior forward Cristen Barnett.

Temple also did not draw any penalty corners during the game. Penn State had 21 corner opportunities.

“We would get caught trying to make tackles once [the play] was behind us,” Johnson said. “Once [the defenders] were beat, they’d still be trying to stick their sticks in to get a tackle.”

Two of the Nittany Lions’ goals were scored off penalty corners. Penn State freshman back Anna Simon scored both of them with drives from the top of the circle.

“The two on corners are always tough because it’s a down numbers situation,” Johnson said.

The Owls next game will be at Howarth Field on Sunday at noon against Fairfield University.

“I think our mentality has to change,” Freeman said. “I think we need to start believing that we can [win] and that we make our own force.”

Jay Neemeyer
can be reached at jay.neemeyer@temple.edu. Follow The Temple News @TheTempleNews

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