STORRS, Conn. - Helped by a five-point performance from sophomore Anna Middendorf (Bremen, Germany), the No. 6 University of Connecticut field hockey team downed Big East rival Old Dominion, 4-0, on Friday night at the George J. Sherman Family Sports Complex. With the victory, the Huskies move to 8-2 (2-0 Big East), while ODU evens its record at 6-6.
The game was a rematch of the 2013 Big East Tournament Championship game, which ended in a dramatic 1-0 UConn overtime victory and gave the Huskies their 13th Big East Tournament crown. Connecticut has now won 18 of its last 20 Big East regular season games dating back to the 2011 season.
After trading possession in the midfield for much of the first half, UConn earned a pair of penalty corners with 12 minutes remaining in the first frame. ODU blocked out the initial shot from Middendorf but the Huskies earned a second-straight corner and Middendorf was able to blast a shot past Megan Hept and give the home team an early 1-0 edge. Olivia Bolles (Phoenixville, Pa.) inserted the ball on the scoring play and Chrissy Davidson also registered an assist with an excellent stick-stop.
Middendorf and the Huskies struck again less than seven minutes later when Connecticut capitalized on another corner. Charlotte Veitner (Dusseldorf, Germany) inserted the ball to Umstead, who stopped the ball at the edge of the circle and allowed Middendorf to whip a shot into the bottom left of the cage.
The Huskies padded their leaded early in the second half when Veitner notched her team-leading fifth goal of the year, slapping a backhanded shot past Hept. Mckenzie Townsend dished out her first assist of the season on the play. Fellow freshman Casey Umstead got into the act less than 10 minutes later when she scored her fourth goal in the last two games at the 46:46 mark.
Redshirt-freshman goalkeeper Nina Klein registered her fifth shutout of the season in the win, making two saves and helping stop four ODU penalty corners. Hept was tagged with the loss after allowing all four Husky goals.
Overall, Connecticut owned a 9-to-6 shot advantage and also owned a 5-to-4 edge in penalty corners.
Next up, the Huskies travel to Boston, Mass. for a Sunday afternoon tilt with Boston University. Action is set to begin at 2 p.m.