PHILADELPHIA - The University of Pennsylvania field hockey team used a lightning-fast start and a record-setting performance from sophomore Alexa Hoover to gain a 7-3 win over Saint Joseph’s on Friday at Ellen Vagelos Field.
Playing at home for the first time this season, the Quakers (2-1) were up 2-0 before the game was three minutes old and 4-0 before nine minutes had passed. Hoover, meanwhile, scored five goals to lead the rout. The previous record of four goals had been met three times but not since 1989, when Judy Jaczun did it against Dartmouth. Prior to that, Patti Vivial hit for four against Brown in 1984, and Lisa Romig notched the first four-goal performance against Swarthmore in 1979.
Hoover led the Ivy League in scoring last year with 14 goals; the reigning Ivy League Rookie of the Year already has 10 this season, through just three games.
It was Hoover who got Penn started on Friday; she scored just 2:16 into the match, and then again only 15 seconds after that. Elizabeth Hitti -- who had a four-point day with a goal and two assists -- made it 3-0 at the 5:22 mark, and then Hoover completed her hat trick at the 8:34 mark. It seemed the rout was on.
Saint Joseph’s (2-3) hung around. The Hawks -- who were only outshot 15-12 in the game and held a 9-3 edge in corners -- gave Penn something to think about at halftime, scoring twice before the break as Monica Tice and then Jenny Morris scored.
However, Gina Guccione scored less than five minutes into the second half, and then Hoover completed her record day by scoring a pair of goals just 2:24 apart less than midway through the period. That gave the Quakers a 7-2 lead, and they never looked back.
Liz Mata went most of the way and had five saves on the day; she was relieved by Reina Kern for the final 15 minutes, and the freshman made one stop.
Penn is back in action on Sunday, traveling up to North Broad Street to take on Temple at 1 p.m.
Download: Penn03 (SJU).pdf