STORRS, Conn. – Freshman forward Casey Umstead (Sellersville, Pa.) notched her first-career hat trick to help propel the No. 6 University of Connecticut field hockey team to a 6-0 victory over Georgetown in its Big East opener on Saturday afternoon at the George J. Sherman Family-Sports Complex. With the win, UConn improves to 7-2 (1-0, Big East), while Georgetown falls to 4-6 (0-1, Big East).
The Huskies won their seventh-consecutive Big East opener. Connecticut also improves to 12-0 all-time against the Hoyas in a series dating back to 1992.
Connecticut dominated possession, out-shooting its conference foes, 27-to-2, and holding an 8-to-1 penalty corner edge.
Redshirt-freshman Nina Klein recorded a clean sheet in the win, making two saves and helping thwart a Georgetown penalty corner. Redshirt-sophomore keeper Katie Guarini (Schecksville, Pa.) saw her first action of the season when she subbed in for Klein at the 67:30 mark. Rochel Skonecki allowed six UConn goals and made 10 saves for the Hoyas in the setback.
Umstead started the scoring early for the Huskies, grabbing her first career goal at the 11:53 mark. Charlotte Veitner (Dusseldorf, Germany) inserted the ball on a Husky penalty corner attempt and Anna Middendorf (Bremen, Germany) fired a pass into the middle of the box where Umstead was able to get a stick on it and send it past the Hoyas’ keeper.
UConn added another goal late in the first half when Sophie Bowden (Somerset, England) tallied her team-leading fifth goal of the year on another Husky penalty corner. Roisin Upton (Limerick, Ireland) fired a shot towards the cage which Bowden tipped into the bottom left corner of the net to extend the lead to 2-0.
The Huskies came out strong in the second half, scoring four times in a span of 14 minutes. Chloe Hunnable (Halstead, England) opened the scoring with her fourth goal of the year at the 51:37 mark. Less than four minutes later, Upton converted a penalty stroke after Bowden was pulled down in the circle. Umstead finished off her stellar afternoon when she notched her second and third goals of the afternoon at the 60:13 and 64:06 marks, respectively. Redshirt-junior Casey Higgins recorded her first assist of the season on the Huskies’ fifth goal.
The Huskies will face a tough conference test on Friday, Oct. 10 when Old Dominion visits Storrs for a Friday night battle in a rematch of the 2013 Big East Tournament Championship game. Action is set to begin at 6 p.m.
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