Hockey Team Drops Two Close Games
by Liz Logan
After three thrillingly close games including two wins
at the start of the season, Oberlins field hockey team is finally
realizing how tough the competition in the North Coast Athletic Conference
really is. This week the Yeowomen suffered two close losses, against
the Wittenberg Tigers 1-0 on Saturday, and another from Ohio Wesleyan
2-1 on Wednesday. The Yeowomen are perhaps no longer on top of the
world, and will consequently have to work a lot harder to keep the
heat on their opponents.
The loss to the Tigers was a shutout for the entire first period until
the stalemate was broken when Wittenberg scored 27 minutes into the
second period. It was a close game, first-year Jamie Johnson
said, throughout both periods the ball just kept going back
Said Coach Liz Graham, Wittenberg was a pretty good game
I was fairly happy with the way be played for most of it. The team
worked well together. We really should not have allowed the goal,
but it was tough they had an offensive corner and a second
of hesitation cost us the game.
Senior goalie Pam Walker is proud of her teams performance against
Wittenberg, especially since the Yeowomen were literally not on their
turf, playing on the Tigers astro-turf rather than grass.
Said Walker, Our stick skills were really awesome. It was really
impressive how we were able to dodge their players on the turf we
werent used to playing on. Wittenberg is a strong team, and
we usually lose to them by at least three goals but this year
it was only one which is showing were stronger. Well beat
them on grass.
The team worked as a united whole against the Tigers. They had
lot of shots on goal. Our defense was really strong in keeping those
shots out of the cage they really stepped up in the second
half. As a team we played well the senior defense and the midfielders
pulled together, like Jessica and Briana to name a few. Well
see more of that togetherness and it will lead to victories like we
had before, Walker said.
The hard-fought struggle with Wittenberg proved to be a sharp contrast
to the Yeowomens performance in the game against The Battling
Bishops of Ohio Wesleyan. Said Walker, The game [with Wittenberg]
was definitely a fight, which is more than I can say for the Ohio
Oberlin was up 1-0 after the first period thanks to a goal by senior
Emily Johnson with an assist by junior Chaney Stewman. But unfortunately,
the Yeowomen let The Battling Bishops come back to tie them in the
second period and then dominate in overtime for a final score of 2-1.
Said Graham, It was horrible. Mentally, we were really taken
out of the game. We didnt do things well that we normally do
well, like for instance, our passing was shaky. In the Wittenberg
game both teams played well, so the game wasnt anything exceptional.
In the Ohio Wesleyan game, both teams played poorly, and they just
a had few moments when they played well.
When asked if there were any particularly exciting or tension-filled
moments in the Ohio Wesleyan matchup, Graham replied, The game
was two hours of tension-filled moments. It was a very difficult game
to watch. The Wittenberg game was not tension-filled. We were playing
well, and that gives the game a good tension. When were playing
badly its more like an Im going to throw up tension.
Walker seemed disappointed by her teams level of play. Our
mission was to win by at least three goals against Ohio Wesleyan,
and that didnt happen. Were definitely a stronger team
than they are, but we are tending to let up in the second half of
games, and thats not a good pattern. We just didnt pull
it together. That game was not a good representation of our skills,
Said senior captain Jessica Raynor, It was the worst game weve
ever played. It was a game we should have won, possibly even easily.
The game was an unexpected struggle for the Yeowomen who had already
experienced several successes this season. Said Walker, Overtime
was rough because they had a weak goalie so they really tightened
up their defense and put everyone they could in our way. It was a
frustrating game because, like [against] Earlham, everyone on their
team clumps over the goal.
The team as a whole has regrets over their performance. Said Walker,
We didnt play
up to our potential, and theres no doubt in my mind well
beat them by a lot next time. We need to communicate more, be more
aggressive, and play our own game a lot of times we fall to
the other teams lower skill level when we get frustrated.
Said Raynor, We got distracted by a lot of things we couldnt
control, like the fact that we only had one ref and he showed
up late so the game didnt start on time.
We had a stroke on their goal and Jenny missed it. We would
have won had that gone in, so it was really tough. Another time like
that was when Vanessa scored in the second half, and the ref called
it back. That was another place where we could have won. There were
a lot of
miscalls on us as well as the other team.
Walker is always impressed with the spirit her team brings to the
game despite the fact that they suffered a loss. The Ohio Wesleyan
players were pushy and said nasty things to us, so I was impressed
with how much sportsmanship our team has. A lot of teams weve
played have been rude, but we always respect them and shake hands
at the end of the game with
smiles on our faces. We leave all our frustration and anger on the
field, and a lot of other teams dont show the same respect.
On Saturday, the Yeowomen will play Kenyon and they are looking forward
a vibrant comeback. Said Graham, Were going to work on
passing until then, moving the ball laterally and taking advantage
of our speed things we didnt do with Ohio Wesleyan.
Said Raynor, We definitely have to win and score a lot of goals
on Kenyon on Saturday. We want to go back to playing the way we played
at the beginning of the season. Kenyon has always been below Oberlin
in the NCAC conference, but they are close competition were
more successful than they are in the conference, but were still
The team is also looking forward to their upcoming rematches with
Wittenberg and Ohio Wesleyan in home games. Said Graham, Its
hard to say we should have won these games. Theres a general
feeling that we let them slip away. Wittenberg is a good team, and
they play on turf, which theyre used to and were not.
We have a good chance of beating them when they come here.
The Yeowomen are optimistically continuing their quest for greatness.
They are particularly excited to be playing Ohio Wesleyan again this
coming Thursday. Said Raynor, Its good theyre coming so
soon after this defeat, because well still be thinking about
the game and well be ready to turn around and beat them. We
know we could have scored a lot on them theyre last in
the conference. We just werent on our game. We were slower and
less skillful, but we can overcome that.
Raynor confirmed that her team ran out of gas. We didnt
have a the aggression, energy, and desire that we had with Denison
and Wittenberg which were both intense games. We didnt show
we wanted it as much. We were so
psyched about how easy it is to beat them that we forgot we have to
work. Were hoping when we play Kenyon we will get back on track
and out of this rut.
Although the Yeowomen are hopeful towards the remainder of the season,
their future is still uncertain. Said Graham, These two games
were a prediction of the future of competition all the games
are going to be tough like this. There are a lot of closely paired
teams in the conference this year with only a few exceptions, so every
game is going to be close.