Lehigh returns home for a pair this weekend, vs. American and Long Island

Lehigh returns home for a pair this weekend, vs. American and Long Island

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BETHLEHEM, Pa. – The Lehigh field hockey team looks to bounce back from a tough road weekend when it hosts American on Saturday (11 a.m.) and Long Island on Sunday (12 p.m.). The Mountain Hawks return home for the first time since Sunday, Sept. 15 when they defeated Georgetown, 3-0. Both games this weekend can be seen live on the Patriot League Network.
 
Lehigh dropped a pair of close road contests in New England last weekend, falling to Holy Cross (4-2) and Bryant (2-1). Against the Crusaders, the Mountain Hawks scored two fourth-quarter goals to pull even at two, but in just 1:24 of game action after the equalizer, Holy Cross had scored twice to retake a two-goal advantage. Then on Sunday, Lehigh opened the scoring in the third quarter, but Bryant had a quick answer to pull even, then scored the game-winning goal in the fourth quarter.
 
Last weekend, junior Lenke Havas tallied a goal and assist while classmate Drew Pecora scored on Saturday and dished an assist on Sunday to up her season totals to eight goals and 19 points, respectively, both good for No. 1 in the Patriot League. The losses were the Mountain Hawks’ first on the road this season, falling to 5-3 overall and 1-1 in league play.
 
American is 5-4 on the season, 1-0 in the Patriot League. The Eagles have won four of their last five overall, defeating James Madison (2-1), Towson (7-0), falling to UC Davis (1-0), beating Bucknell (3-1) and topping Georgetown (2-1). Noor Coenen leads the offense in goals (6), assists (4) and points (16), just three points behind Pecora’s league-leading 19. Coenen tallied eight of those points against Towson in a monster three-goal, two-assist effort. Jette Dieckmann stands second on the Eagles in points with seven via three goals and an assist. Fiona Minter has started eight-of-nine games, tallying a 1.56 goals against average and 48.0 save percentage. As a team, American has only allowed 26 shots on goal for the season, but 13 have found the back of the cage.
 
The Eagles lead the all-time series against Lehigh, 20-0. Last season, the Mountain Hawks scored a goal at American – their first goal in the series since 2012. Lehigh did have a close call at home against the Eagles in 2015, falling 1-0 in overtime.
 
The Long Island Sharks are in their first season of existence, due to the merging of the athletic programs of LIU Brooklyn and LIU Post. The Sharks stand 2-5 with wins over Towson (3-2) and Lock Haven (1-0) last time out. Their last two losses have also been by just one, in a shootout (at La Salle) and in overtime (at Saint Francis (Pa.)). Kaitlyn Olton leads the team in goals (5) and points (10) while Taylor Brodsky leads the way with three assists. Sammy Bell is second on LIU in points (6) via two goals and two assists. Goalkeeper Rachel Vellis has started every game, owning a 2.01 GAA and 77.3 save percentage.
 
Lehigh is 1-1 all-time when facing LIU Brooklyn, defeating the then Blackbirds at home in 2017 (1-0) before falling last season on the road (6-2).
 
Following this weekend, the Mountain Hawks hit the road for games at Bucknell on Saturday, Oct 12 (12 p.m.) and Lock Haven on Sunday, Oct. 13 (1 p.m.).

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