USA Field Hockey's weekly feature of highlighting some of the top college games in Division I, II and III is back for the 2019 season.
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THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 26
DI: Penn State vs. California | 6:30 p.m. ET | Live Stats
Meeting at a neutral site, Penn State will battle California on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. ET at Spooky Nook Sports in Lancaster, Pa. Penn State is looking for their first win of the season after playing all top-25 opponents so far in their first six games. In the last meeting between these two teams in 2017, the Nittany Lions topped California 2-1. The Bears have also packed their schedule with tough match-ups, with their sole win coming against Quinnipiac in their home opener. They will work to start their east-coast road trip with a positive result and defeat Penn State.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 27
DI: No. 22 Old Dominion at No. 3 Connecticut | 3:00 p.m. ET | Huskies All-Access
Big East rivals No. 22 Old Dominion and No. 3 Connecticut will play in their second conference game of the 2019 season on Friday at 3:00 p.m. ET in Storrs, Conn. Both teams have a conference win under their belt, so this match will put one team at 1-1 in Big East play. Last season, the game was close at 4-2 in favor of the Huskies, but Old Dominion still holds the most wins in the series history between the two teams. Connecticut has claimed the last seven wins as they aim to extend that streak to eight.
DI: No.1 North Carolina at No. 5 Virginia | 6:00 p.m. ET | ACCNX
Undefeated and top-ranked North Carolina will continue Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) play at No. 5 Virginia on Friday at 6:00 p.m. ET. Last weekend, the Tar Heels defeated both No. 6 Louisville and Appalachian State 4-1 as they head into their second ACC game of the year. Virginia's only loss this season comes after falling to No. 4 Maryland in a shootout. The Cavaliers have produced three straight shutouts in their games since, with the second goal of their most recent win over James Madison featured as an ESPN SportsCenter Top 10 play. The 2018 match-up saw North Carolina come out on top with a score of 3-0. Both teams are 1-0 against conference opponents and both want to avoid making their ACC record 1-1.
DII: No. 5 Kutztown at Slippery Rock | 5:00 p.m. ET | Live Stats
No. 5 Kutztown and Slippery Rock will meet again in Slippery Rock, Pa. on Friday at 5:00 p.m. ET. The two teams have already met in 2019 with Kutztown claiming a 3-0 win, so they are familiar with what each other can bring to Friday’s match-up. The Golden Bears stand at a 4-2 record with wins over No. 6 Shippensburg and No. 9 Adelphi earlier this season. Slippery Rock is 2-4 but have managed to keep the goal margins close in every game. They will look to avenge their loss and start official conference play with a positive result.
DII: No. 1 Millersville at Mercyhurt | 6:00 p.m. ET | Game Central
Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) foes will face off as No. 1 Millersville travels to Mercyhurst in Erie, Pa. for a 6:00 p.m. ET start on Friday. Millersville is undefeated this year after eight games and will look to add to their winning streak and tally a conference win too. Mercyhurst is 1-5 and has already competed against many PSAC teams, including Millersville who bested them 5-0 just four days ago. The score was identical when the teams met in 2018, so Mercyhurst will look to avenge their loss on Friday. The two teams have met a total of fifteen times in their history with the Marauders claiming all of those victories. Will tides turn and Mercyhurst upset the top-ranked team?
DIII: Lebanon Valley at Albright | 3:30 p.m. ET | Live Stream
Middle Atlantic Conference rivals Lebanon Valley and Albright will begin conference play against each other on Friday at 3:30 p.m. ET in Reading, Pa. Lebanon Valley scooted by with the 4-3 win last season with a comeback effort in the second half. Having added a few more ranked opponents into their schedule, the Dutchmen hold a record of 3-5, while the Lions are 3-6. Albright pulled out a victory in 2017, and they will look to recreate that win as the teams meet Friday.
DIII: Cortland at Brockport | 4:00 p.m. ET | Golden Eagle All-Access
State University of New York Athletic Conference play will continue as Cortland visits Brockport on Friday at 4 p.m. ET. With similar records of 5-2 and 6-2 respectively, the two teams will battle it out to avoid adding a third loss to their margin. Last year, Cortland dominated Brockport 6-0, but the story may end in a different result this season. So far in 2019, Brockport earned hefty wins against strong opponents, while Cortland’s have been closer matches.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 28
DI: No. 16 Harvard at Yale | 12:00 p.m. ET | ESPN+ ($)
Ivy League Conference match-ups kick off on Saturday as No. 16 Harvard visits Yale at 12:00 p.m. ET in New Haven, Conn. In 2018, Harvard bested Yale 6-0 as they cruised through conference play. The Crimson currently hold a record of 3-2 as they fell to top-25 opponents Connecticut and Stanford. Yale is 2-3 and are coming off a six-goal win over Wagner. Both teams will look to start conference play strong with a victory.
DI: No. 4 Maryland at No. 18 Rutgers | 1:00 p.m. ET | BTN+ ($)
More Big Ten conference action will take place on Saturday in Piscataway, N.J. as No. 4 Maryland takes on No. 18 Rutgers at 1:00 p.m. ET. Rutgers has yet to face a conference opponent, while Maryland beat Penn State 3-1 earlier in September. The Terps came out victorious over the Scarlet Knights in 2018 with a score of 3-1. Rutgers has shown their tenacity as they topped No. 10 Princeton 2-1 last week, and they will look to do the same against another higher ranked opponent Saturday.
DII: No. 8 Southern New Hampshire at No. 9 Adelphi | 1:00 p.m. ET | NE10 NOW
Sitting only one rank away from each other, No. 8 Southern New Hampshire and No. 9 Adelphi will battle to keep or improve their rank as they meet on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. ET. Southern New Hampshire took the win in 2018, but Adelphi holds the most wins in the series between the two. Both are part of the Northeast Ten conference and this match will be another game toward establishing standings for the tournament in November. Adelphi senior striker Elissa Frien will be one to watch as she was named the Northeast-10 Conference Field Hockey Player of the Week as well as Play Safe Turf and Track/NFHCA Division II Offensive Player of the Week after tallying nine points on three goals and three assists last week in two conference wins.
DII: Bloomsburg at No. 6 Shippensburg | 5:00 p.m. ET | Live Stream
Another PSAC battle will take place on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. ET between Bloomsburg and No. 6 Shippensburg. The reigning national champions Shippensburg suffered a few losses before getting back on track with a win over Mercyhurst last weekend, making their record 3-3. Bloomsburg, who was previously ranked, is 2-4 with most of their losses coming to other PSAC opponents. The Huskies come off a win over Frostburg and will look to disrupt Shippensburg’s comeback with their first official conference win.
DIII: York at Lynchburg | 11:30 a.m. ET | YouTube
In Virginia, York will face Lynchburg in a non-conference match. As they met in 2018, York walked away with the 3-2 win, however 2017 saw Lynchburg grind out a victory in overtime. Lynchburg is 5-2 so far this season, and York is 3-4 with the majority of their losses to ranked opponents. The two teams are from different conferences, so a win will mean an improved record and either the beginning or continuation of a losing streak.
DIII: Elizabethtown at Susquehanna | 1:00 p.m. ET | Game Central
Elizabethtown will meet Landmark Conference opponent Susquehanna in Selinsgrove, Pa. on Thursday at 1:00 p.m. ET. Both teams will look to improve their records and notch their first win on the road to qualifying for their conference tournament in November. Last year, Elizabethtown narrowly won in overtime in regular season action, but Susquehanna came out on top in the conference tournament, ending the Blue Jays' season. It is a toss up as to who will claim the win this time.
DIII: Stevens at King's | 5:00 p.m. ET | Monarch All-Access
Another set of Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) teams will meet on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. ET in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. as Stevens visits King’s. Stevens is 5-3 with losses only coming to top-20 teams. King’s is 4-4, and their wins have boasted large goal-differentials. This is Stevens’ first year as part of the MAC Freedom, and they want to prove their strength as they begin conference play and meet the other conference opponents this season.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 29
DI: No. 11 Saint Joseph's at No. 17 Boston College | 12:00 p.m. ET | ACCNX
No. 11 Saint Joseph’s will visit No. 17 Boston College for out-of-conference play this weekend. The two teams have not met in the last few years, leaving this match-up to set a precedent should they meet in the future. Saint Joseph’s sits at 6-1 overall, suffering only one loss to No. 19 Syracuse in overtime. Boston College is 4-3 and most recently beat Atlantic Coast Conference opponent No. 21 Wake Forest to keep their ranking in the top-20. The Hawks might have a hard time getting past ACC Defensive Player of the Week and Play Safe Turf and Track/NFHCA Division I Defensive Player of the Week Boston College sophomore goalkeeper Jonna Kennedy after she recorded a 2-0 shutout against Wake Forest and led the defensive effort with six saves as the Demon Deacons out shot the Eagles 11-10.
DI: No. 9 Michigan at No. 7 Northwestern | 1:00 p.m. ET | Live Stats
Closely-ranked No. 9 Michigan and No. 7 Northwestern will meet in Evanston, Ill. on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. ET to see who will earn their first Big Ten win of the season. A close game last year, Michigan claimed the 3-2 win in regular season as well as the 3-1 win in the conference tournament in November. Northwestern currently holds a better record than their rival, earning close victories over top-25 teams. A player to watch in this game is Big Ten Conference Offensive Player of the Week and Freshman of the Week and Play Safe Turf and Track/NFHCA Division I Offensive Player of the Week Northwestern redshirt-freshman striker Bente Baekers. Baekers produced a 12-point weekend by scoring a hat trick in each of last week's games to help the Wildcats extend their six-game winning streak. The Big Ten is always competitive, and this game will be no exception.
DII: Lindenwood at Frostburg | 11:00 a.m. ET | Mountain East Network
Lindenwood will visit Frostburg on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. ET in Frostburg, Md. in a non-conference game. The two teams have not competed against each other in the past few years, ensuring this match will be interesting to see who wins. Lindenwood sits at 3-1 on the year, with their only loss coming against No. 9 Adelphi. Frostburg put together a tough 2019 schedule and has not found a positive result yet. They will look to put a tally in the win column following Sunday’s game.
DII: No. 10 Assumption at St. Thomas Aquinas | 1:00 p.m. ET | NE10 NOW
No. 10 Assumption will travel to Sparkhill, N.Y. to play East Coast Conference rival St. Thomas Aquinas. The two met earlier this week where Assumption handled the Spartans and extended their conference record to 3-1. It was a similar story in 2018 as Assumption won 3-0 on the road. St. Thomas Aquinas will look to avenge their loss and notch their first conference win as the two battle this weekend.
DIII: No. 1 Middlebury at Amherst | 12:00 p.m. ET | Northeast Sports Network
No. 1 Middlebury will meet New England Small College Athletic Conference (ESCAC) opponent Amherst in Amherst, Mass. on Sunday at 12:00 p.m. ET. Each team has already competed in three conference games, with Middlebury going undefeated and Amherst falling to No. 7 Bowdoin and Hamilton as their only losses of the season. The Panthers have proven their strength as they have a 7-0 record but they have not ventured outside of New England. Amherst received votes in the last round of Penn Monto/NFHCA rankings and they are eying a break into the top-20 which could begin with a win over Middlebury.
DIII: St. Joseph's College of Maine at No. 20 Kean | 12:00 p.m. ET | Kean All-Access
No. 20 Kean will host St. Joseph’s College of Maine on Sunday at 12:00 p.m. ET in Union, N.J. Kean broke the top-20 this week after earning their eighth-straight win on the season. They now sit at 9-1 with their lone loss to No. 4 Salisbury in their opening match. St. Joseph’s is also on a winning streak of their own with four games, making their record 7-1. One team’s winning streak will come to an end while the other’s will extend after the game on Sunday.
* DI Rankings are based off NFHCA Division I Coaches Poll Week 3 (Posted September 24, 2019)
** DII Rankings are based off NFHCA Division II Coaches Poll Week 2 (Posted September 24, 2019)
*** DIII Rankings are based off NFHCA Division I Coaches Poll Week 3 (Posted September 24, 2019)