Coming off their weekend loss in the Little East Conference Championship at Plymouth State the USM field hockey team took the field last Thursday against Worcester State.

It was a fresh fall afternoon, with long shadows cast over the field. Renee Heath, with her quickness and sly moves, sped across the field, dusting Worcester State defenders with ease.

Earlier that day Heath was told of her second All-American nomination. She did not let her voters down, and scored USM’s first goal midway through the first half.

Sarah Dolley scored the second goal, ricocheting a Deedra Beveridge shot past Worcester State’s goalie in the second half to secure victory for USM.

The first goal of the day would have been enough to stave off Worcester State, as goalie Jesse Superchi posted a shut out. Superchi had also been informed of her All-American honors that morning and demonstrated what it meant to be a true two-time All-American near the end of the first half. Worcester State had her working double-time, with a flurry of shots, but Superchi prevailed, seriously diminishing Worcester State’s hopes for victory.

Superchi, after the game, modestly credited, back Erika Profenno for her shutout. The one ball that got by Superchi was slapped off-track by Profenno’s stick during the Worcester State onslaught.

The win was the 2002 Lady Huskies fifteenth, tying the record set in 1986 and matched in 1990, with at least one more game to play.

The team has been engaged in tournament play since last week. Their loss against Plymouth State is still being debated because of a questionable call by Plymouth State’s referee. The tying goal by USM late in the match against Plymouth State was called back for reasons that still aren’t clear. That has been their only loss in tournament play and it resulted in their second place finish in the LEC. Now the tournament is for the ECAC championship.

“These have been the longest halves of my life,” said Superchi. “They are only thirty minutes but it seems like a lifetime.”

At the beginning of the season Brown-Denico and players had expressed concerns with their youthfulness being a problem, with only three seniors on the team.

Coach Bonny Brown-Denico said, “It is the most improved group. They’ve improved on their ability to work together and individually. They’ve come a long way, and have completely exceeded my expectations.”

Going into the next round of single elimination, captain Amy Ouellet said, “We try not to think about losing. We just need to play USM field hockey.”

“We just try to have fun everyday. If we get nervous than we are not having fun. When we have fun we play well,” said Beveridge.

In their semifinal game against Mt. Holyoke on Saturday Nov. 16, the Huskies were unable to advance with a 2-1 loss. They ended their season at 15-8, and were unable to break the record of most wins in a season. Next year, if all eligible players return, the Lady Huskies will begin the year on the solid foundation they built this season, all three captains will be seniors along with goalie Jesse Superchi. Only Sarah Dolley, Jodi Eldridge and Laura Jurkowski are seniors this year, not a bad season to end on, by any means.

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