The Vermont field hockey team will play just one game this weekend – the third of four straight at home – when #25 Maine comes to town for America East action.
The Cats and Black Bears square off on Friday afternoon starting at 2 p.m. All the action from Moulton Winder Field can be seen on AmericaEast.tv.
Vermont went 1-1 last weekend picking up a key victory over UC Davis on Friday, 4-0, before falling to Cal in the Sunday matinee, 2-0. Alina Gerke scored two goals in Friday’s win over the Aggies and Sierra Espeland made four saves in her fourth shutout of the season. The Cats out-cornered the Golden Bears on Sunday 14-4 but couldn’t find the scoring touch. Gerke tallied game-high nine shots in the defeat while Espeland made eight saves.
Sierra Espeland was named the America East Defensive Player of the Week for the second straight week. Espeland stopped 12 of the 14 shots she faced for a .857 save percentage. Her shutout of UC Davis on Friday was her ninth career clean sheet which moves her into a tie for fourth all-time at UVM.
LEADING THE WAY
Senior midfielder Clodagh Ferry leads the conference in shots on goal firing 34 on cage this season. Her eight goals rank fifth in the league. Puck Kwaspen and Kate Hall both have nine assists which is best in the conference and tied for the second most in the country. Their nine assists apiece are also most in a single season for UVM since 2006. Sierra Espeland is tied for the league lead in shutouts with four, ranks second in save percentage (.761) and third with a 1.58 goals against average.
SCOUTING THE BLACK BEARS
Maine sits atop the league standings with a 5-0 mark and has won eight straight games overall. The Black Bears swept last weekend’s action against Cal and UC Davis outscoring their west-coast counterparts 10-1 over two games. Poppy Lambert, Brooke Sulinski and Brooke Walton all have 18 or more points this season and Lambert’s 10 goals are tied for the league lead. Maine leads the league in scoring offense with 40 goals and 36 assists this season.
Friday marks the 46th all-time meeting with Maine dating back to the 1979 season. The Black Bears hold a 34-10-1 lead in the series. Last season in Orono, Maine picked up a 2-0 win. Vermont defeated Maine 3-0 in October of 2018 for its most recent win in the series.