Temple University field hockey (4-5, 0-3 Big East Conference) lost to Connecticut (10-1, 3-0 Big East) 5-0, at Howarth Field on Friday.
The Huskies are a national powerhouse and are ranked third in the National Field Hockey Coaches Association poll.
They knocked out the Owls early on by scoring four goals in the first half. Three of the goals came off penalty corners. The Huskies received 22 corners, and they nearly tapped in a several more goals from those opportunities.
The Owls hope to become more efficient at defending corners, coach Susan Ciufo said.
“They were three of the same corners, to the same exact player,” Ciufo said.
Junior midfielder Jennifer Dembrowski scored twice for the Huskies. Sophomore midfielder Abby Gooderham had a goal and three assists to lead UConn in points.
Freshman midfielder Sophie Hamilton received the corner insert for all three successful UConn corners and was credited for three assists.
“So really it’s recognizing if there is a lethal opportunity, we need to be a little bit more diligent and a little more disciplined marking that up,” Ciufo said.
The second half was a much better performance for the Owls. The Huskies only scored once in the early stages of the third quarter.
“Our energy is super positive right now and we have a really special team,” Ciufo said. “I think, for us to, you know, last year, they won two games and that was really rough for them. We’re ahead of that mark right now. We might not have won the last three games, but we are still playing better hockey than we were in the past.”
The Huskies put 22 shots on cage, compared to Temple who only recorded 3 shots, all in the third quarter.
UConn made it tough for Owls junior goaltender Cristina Carotenuto, who finished with four saves.
The Owls offense could not generate anything, as the UConn defense put constant pressure on them. This allowed the Huskies to create turnovers.
The loss was tough, but the Owls can learn valuable lessons from the defeat, Ciufo said.
“With where we are at in our program, and it being a serious transition year for us and the new staff, with UConn being ranked third in the nation, keeping at five is quite a feat for us and our defense,” Ciufo said.
Next, the Owls will take on conference rival Georgetown ( 5-6, 1-2 Big East) at Cooper Field in Washington, D.C. on Friday at 1 p.m. The Owls, who have lost three-straight games, are still looking for their first Big East win of the season.