#5 Field Hockey Keeps Rolling Against Merrimack, 4-0

Smith nets hat trick and Freedman posts third straight shutout with ten saves

Smith added three more goals to lead the Skyhawks tonight, giving her eight for the season. (PHOTO BY Eamonn Grealish)

EASTON, Mass. (September 14, 2016) – Stonehill College, ranked No. 5 in this week's Penn Monto/National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division II poll, rolled to a 4-0 victory over Merrimack College in non-conference field hockey action at Timothy J. Coughlin '80 Memorial Field at W.B. Mason Stadium tonight.

Sophomore Kacie Smith (Norwood, Massachusetts/Norwood) led Stonehill with her second straight hat trick as her three goals tonight give her seven of the Skyhawks last eight markers scored in the last two games. Classmate Sara Freedman (Hopkinton, Massachusetts/Hopkinton) posted her third straight shutout on the Skyhawks cage, finishing the night with ten saves for her second double-figure save performance of the season. It extends Stonehill's shutout streak to 236:02 dating back to the 43rd-minute of its season-opener against top-ranked East Stroudsburg University.

Sophomore Carly Andersen (Cheshire, Connecticut/Canterbury School) added her first goal of the season for Stonehill, while juniors Alexandria Sylvia (Brockton, Massachusetts/Brockton) and Alexandra Dillon (Canton, Massachusetts/Canton) each dished out assists. The Skyhawks held a 19-15 edge in shots in the wide-open game, while penalty corners finished even at 12 apiece.

Freshman Katharina Ohmen (Bremen, Germany) finished with six saves in her collegiate debut for Merrimack. Senior back Sarah Sparks (Falmouth, Maine/Falmouth) chipped in with a defensive stop.

Freedman posted her third straight shutout, running her scoreless minutes streak to over 236. (PHOTO BY SportsPix)

Smith opened the scoring 11:41 into the first half as Sylvia broke down the right side on a counter attack and slid a pass to the left side of the circle to Smith, who took a touch and then fired a low shot into the left side of the net. Smith played a role in the Skyhawks second marker with 9:01 remaining in the half as her shot was stopped by Sparks in behind Ohmen, but Andersen was able to push the rebound over the line for a goal.

Smith gave Stonehill a three goal lead at halftime when she took a corner pass from Dillon and worked the ball to the right of the circle and fired a rocket past Ohmen with a minute left in the half. She capped her hat trick with 7:25 left in regulation with her eighth goal of the season off a rebound on the left side following a penalty corner.

Stonehill (3-1, 0-0 NE-10) is back in action on Saturday when it hosts Saint Michael's College for its Northeast-10 Conference opener at W.B. Mason Stadium at 11 a.m. Merrimack (0-3, 0-0 NE-10) hosts No. 7 LIU Post on Saturday at noon.

For the latest on Stonehill Athletics, follow the Skyhawks via social media on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Fans can also download the Stonehill Skyhawks "Front Row" mobile app, powered by PrestoSports, on iTunes and the Android Market. Stonehill will serve as host of the 2016 NCAA Division II Field Hockey Championship at W.B. Mason Stadium, November 18-20.