Field Hockey Ranks #25 Nationally After Win

F Hockey 9.20.17The Monmouth University’s field hockey is now ranked nationally for the first time in school history, coming in at #25 nationally in the Penn Monto/National Field Hockey Coaches Association National Poll. This comes after they produced a 3-2 road win this past Sunday afternoon against rival Quinnipiac in Hamden, Connecticut. The hard-fought victory improves the Hawks to a 5-2 record and extends their winning streak to three. 

“Being nationally ranked for the first time in our program’s history is an honor,” said Head Coach Carli Figlio. “We are hoping that we have only begun to see our true potential as a field hockey team.”

Goals were difficult to come by as both MU and Quinnipiac played stringy defense all day. Monmouth scored first in the sixth minute due to sophomore forward standout Rachel Konowal. Hoop has recorded a goal in four straight games and this one came off a feed from senior mid-fielder Rachel Konowal who extended her point streak to six games with the assist.

Quinnipiac responded ten minutes later by scoring back to back goals in a five-minute span to gain a 2-1 lead. The Hawks wasted no time evening the game up as it took seconds for junior forward Kelly Hanna to tie the game at two. Hanna buried a rebound off a corner shot and senior defender Julie Laszlo was credited with the assist.

The game broke for halftime tied at two and Monmouth found themselves in a different position than their previous games. The Hawks outshot their opponents by an average of 21 last week and dominated the games throughout. This contest was different as the Bobcats had the lead in the shots department and were matching the Hawks step for step.

It took ten minutes before the next goal was scored. Sophomore defender Annie Deusch scored the eventual game winner on a dazzling play where she split two defenders and blasted a shot into the net for her first goal of the season.

The Hawks defense continues to impress, Quinnipiac was held to ten shots this game and only two goals. Additionally, senior goalkeeper Christen Piersanti played her role in the win by making three crucial saves, her shutout streak was ended at 146 minutes and she earned her 41st career victory.    

“It was a hard-fought battle and we were happy to come out with the win,” Figlio said after the game.

The field hockey team additional brought home two Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) awards this past week. These awards came after an impressive weekend that highlighted Monmouth’s offensive and defensive ability. Hoop was named as the offensive player of the week after her impressive 10 point outing last week. Laszlo secured the defensive player of the week for her part in last week’s back to back shutout wins. Laszlo was key piece in a defense that allowed a combined nine shots and only three of those were on goal.

Figlio celebrated her 100th win two weeks ago and was honored with a trophy to commemorate the occasion. Figlio is now in her 11th year at Monmouth and she has racked up a slew of awards, including the MAAC coach of the year in 2016. The team itself has improved every single year under her guide and this year should be no different.

“It means a lot to me, being here and developing a program for 11 years now it is amazing to see how much we have grown. The girls do all the work and I get the reward from that. To beat Kent State for the award was the icing on the being that I played there,” Figlio said on receiving the reward.

The Hawks are slated to return home next weekend for matchups against Drexel on Friday, Sept. 22 at 4:00 p.m. and Indiana on Sunday, Sept. 24 at 12:00 p.m. The game against Indiana will be broadcasted live on ESPN3. 

PHOTO COURTESY of B51Photography/Mark Brown