Dartmouth Big Green (6-4) vs. No. 2 North Carolina (12-1*)
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Dartmouth heads to suburban Boston for a neutral-site game with No. 2 North Carolina Sunday afternoon at Boston College's Newton Campus Turf Field. The meeting between the Big Green and the Tar Heels is the first for the two programs and is set to begin at noon.
Sunday's game will mark the third time this season that Dartmouth will have lined up across from an opponent ranked in the Top-3 nationally by that week's Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Poll. UNC ranks No. 2 in the current poll released by the NFHCA after several weeks holding down the top spot. The Big Green have also faced off against Princeton (No. 2) and Maryland (No. 3) this fall.
SCOUTING THE TAR
Prior to Sunday's game with the Green and White, North Carolina will play an ACC contest Saturday against Boston College. Heading into the weekend, the Tar Heels sport a respectable 12-1 overall record with the lone loss coming in overtime to now-No. 1 Syracuse on the first day of September, 1-0, on the road. Since that game, the team has won 10 straight and overall have beaten eight teams ranked in the Top-20 already this season. Kelsey Kolojejchick is the leading scorer with 11 goals and 16 assists for 38 points. Sassi Ammer has started in all but one game, posting an 11-1 mark with a 1.16 goals-against average and three solo shutouts.
FIVE IN A ROW
Wednesday's win at Providence pushed the Dartmouth streak to five games and its overall record to 6-4. The Big Green have bounced back nicely from a four-game losing streak that immediately proceeded the current stretch of "W's", the longest run of victories since 2009. It's the fifth streak of five or more wins since the 2000 season, head coach Amy Fowler's first with the program.
GOALS IN BUNCHES
Wednesday's game in Providence saw the Big Green score three goals in a 7:18 span midway through the first half to put the game away. That stretch of quick scoring was not even close to the team's shortest span between tallies this season. At Holy Cross on Sept. 23, Dartmouth scored three goals in spans of 3:36 and 4:07, while twice finding the back of the cage 57 seconds apart. At home against Bryant on Sept. 19, the Big Green scored two goals in a 1:16 window.
The trio of goals in the first half came from junior Sam Anderson (Wilton, Conn.) and sophomore Ali Savage (Orange, New South Wales, Australia). Anderson scored twice, bookending Savage's second goal in as many games. Dartmouth used that surge to take the 3-0 lead, eventually holding on for the 3-1 win.
The last line of defense is always the goalkeeper. Lately, sophomore Ellen Meyer (Prospect, Ky.) has done everything in her power to keep her team in every game. In making the team's last three starts (all wins), Meyer has posted a 0.67 goals-against average and a .846 save percentage with one shutout. She has allowed just two goals in that time, while making 11 saves.
In the last five contests, Dartmouth has come from behind, blown teams out and won close games. Here are a few of the key stats to note during that time:
- Anderson and classmate Maggie Scanlon (Shaker Heights, Ohio) lead the team in scoring with nine points apiece. Anderson leads with four goals, while Scanlon's three assists are the most by any player.
- Seven players have five or more points.
- Dartmouth is averaging 4.40 goals per game, while allowing just 1.80 to opponents.
- Five players have three or more goals and seven have multiple tallies.
- The Big Green are outscoring opponents 22-9 during the stretch, including a 11-2 advantage in the first half.
- Dartmouth has more than doubled its opponents' shot totals (102-45 / 50-19 in the first half and 52-26 in the second) as well as its corners (40-19).
- Despite playing an aggressive style that attacks the goal, the Big Green have not been issued a yellow card, while opponents have been carded twice in that time.
- The Green and White have not trailed in a game since the 60th minute against Brown on Sept. 22, a stretch of 220:57 either tied or leading the opposition.
HOMECOMING OF SORTS
Assistant coach Kristine Stigas returns to her alma mater Sunday. The former BC goalkeeper played four seasons with the Eagles and will be making her first return trip to the Newton Campus Turf Field for game action since finishing up her career in the 2009 season. That year, Stigas posted a 13-7 record with a 2.35 goals-against average and two shutouts, earning a spot on the NFHCA All-Northeast Region Second Team.
For those fans not making the trip to BC to watch the Big Green take on the Tar Heels, DartmouthSports.com will be there to keep you covered. Live stats as well as live updates from @DartmouthSports will keep Big Green fans in the loop as the team faces off with another national power.
Dartmouth field hockey warming up for today's game against No. 2 UNC here at Boston College. twitter.com/dartmouthsport…— Dartmouth Athletics (@dartmouthsports) October 7, 2012