Field Hockey Hosts Drexel

PHILADELPHIA – Penn field hockey enters tonight’s game against cross-town rival Drexel with wins in six of its last seven games. The Quakers’ most recent win was a 3-2, come from behind victory at Delaware on October 10. The Quakers’ record stands at 6-5 overall with a 2-1 mark in the Ivy League. The Dragons are 7-7 on the year and have a 3-2 record in the Colonial Athletic Association.

The Quakers own a 6-2 record in the all-time series against the Dragons, including a 3-0 victory last season on Drexel’s home field.

One key to Penn’s resurgence over the last month has been the play of Meghan Rose. Four games into the season, the 2006 unanimous selection to the All-Ivy team had registered only two assists. In the seven games since, the co-captain has found her offensive game, scoring five goals and an assist over that span and vaulting into the team lead in points. The strongest evidence towards her value to the team comes from Wednesday’s game against the Blue Hens. With the Quakers trailing by two goals and 20 minutes remaining, Rose threw her team on her back and carried them back into the game. She scored Penn’s first goal of the game at the 49:36 mark as she walked all alone into the circle and fired a shot through the five-hole of Delaware’s goalkeeper. She followed that up with a penalty stroke goal eight minutes later to tie the game. Rose is a perfect three-for-three in penalty strokes as a Quaker.

She credits her team’s winning ways to the time spent in practice.

“We are creating our own offense now,” said Rose, “We scrimmage more now and those games are harder than ever. We take risks in the scrimmages so they became natural chances during the games. We are definitely finding each other better.”

Some notes entering tonight’s game:

• Penn’s victory over Lock Haven on October 5 was head coach Val Cloud’s 100th career win. Her best season was in 2004 when she guided the Quakers to a 13-4 record, including a 6-1 Ivy League record which was good for her only Ivy title.

• Tonight’s game marks only the ninth meeting between Penn and Drexel. The Quakers hold a 6-2 advantage.

• Last season, Penn defeated the Dragons, 3-0 at Drexel. Tracey Statter scored two goals for the Quakers and Nicole Black added the third. Liz Schlossberg made seven saves in the shutout win.

• Last time out, Penn traveled to Newark, Del. to face the Delaware Blue Hens. Despite controlling play for most of the first half, Penn was down 1-0 entering the break. Another Blue Hen goal extended the lead to 2-0 with 24 minutes to play. Senior Meghan Rose scored two goals in eight minutes to tie the game. The score remained that way until senior Jamie Calahan took a pass from Christina Ferrier and fired a shot that eluded a diving Blue Hen goalie. Penn’s defense held off the Hens for the remainder of the game, securing a 3-2 win.

• Rose’s second goal against Delaware came as a result of a penalty stroke. This was her third career penalty stroke goal. The other two came against Villanova (10/3/07) and Harvard (9/9/06).

Scouting the Dragons

• Drexel enters the game at 7-7, including a 3-3 mark in the Colonial Athletic Association.

• Leading the Dragons in scoring is Carolina Gibernau. The sophomore from Uruguay has four goals and four assists on the season.

• Colleen McAndrew has played every minute of all 14 games for Drexel. The junior from Bethlehem, Pa. has played 1013 minutes this season due to four overtime games, including one double-overtime affair against Temple.

• McAndrew set a school record in 2005 when she held Saint Joseph’s, James Madison and Lehigh scoreless over three games. She also holds the school record for consecutive scoreless minutes at 290:50, also set in 2005.

• Penn welcomes back one of its all-time greats today in Drexel Associate Head Coach Nicky Hitchens. She was a three-time All-Ivy selection from 1986-1988. In addition, she was 1985 Ivy League Rookie of the Year and was the last Quaker to be named Ivy League Player of the Year in 1988. She received the Anne Towsend Award as Penn’s Most Valuable Player three times. She still holds the second highest single season point total for the Quakers with 35 in 1988 and her career total of 79 sits fourth all-time for Penn.