Monmouth field hockey quite literally shutout the competition this past week with a perfect 3-0 record, outscoring their opponents by a score of 6-0 in three games.
Junior goalkeeper Kate O’Hogan was the leader of the Hawks, earning America East Defensive Player of the Week after recording three shutout victories in net.
This was O’Hogan’s third Defensive Player of the Week honor of her career after recording four total saves against America East competition.
In game number one of the week and six for the season on Wednesday, Monmouth took on the Golden Bears of California at So Sweet a Cat Field. The first goal came in the second quarter when sophomore Aylin Aufenacker executed in front of the net on the assist from redshirt junior Hannah Schiavo. The blue and white took the first goal and ran with it following up in the quarter with a goal from junior forward Katie Yoder to make it 2-0. The assist on Yoder’s goal came from junior forward Annick van Lange, which was her third of the season and 63rd career point.
Senior midfielder Ireen Frenken secured the victory in the fourth quarter after a penalty drawn by Aufenacker set up the penalty shot to make it a 3-0 final.
“Today was a massive win and a total team effort,” said Head Coach Carli Figlio. “We had Aylin, Katie, and Ireen step up in a very big way and it paid off for us.”
Heading into game two of the week on Friday against UMass Lowell, the Hawks were locked into a defensive battle from the jump as the entire first half went scoreless. O’Hogan carried the team for most of the game with three total saves on seven shots in net and left it up to the offense to score a lone goal for the win.
Van Lange got the job done in the third quarter, thanks to an assist from Frenken for her first goal of the season and 28th of her career resulting in the 1-0 final.
“Today, the girls showed a ton of character; they stayed the course even when their legs were tired and I’m really proud of how deep they dug today in order to come out with a total team win,” said Figlio. “All the teams that we have competed against have been such great competitors and for the girls to be able to mentally as well as physically withstand these last four games in seven days, I’m just so proud of who we’re starting to mold ourselves into.”
The week concluded on Sunday afternoon on the road against a tough component, University of Albany—and once again, the story of the game was defense. Aufenacker kept her strong season going with the first goal of the game at the 18-minute mark assisted by Frenken. At the 40-minute mark, Aufenacker returned the favor with an assist back to Frenken for the 2-0 advantage.
This was more than enough for the red-hot O’Hogan, who closed out her fourth shutout of the season and third in a row, helping improve Monmouth’s record to 6-2 on the season.
“To come out of a five game in nine-day schedule with four wins is a complete testament to the mentality and will of this team,” said Figlio. “I’m incredibly proud to be surrounded by such strong female athletes and am excited to see what the future holds for this team.”
Next on the docket for the Hawks is the final home game of the season on Friday, April 2 where they will play Maine again at 11:00 a.m.
PHOTO COURTESY of Monmouth University