Field Hockey

2016 NCAA Tournament Final Four | 4 NCAA Tournaments | 2 Conference Championships

Game Preview: No. 3 Field Hockey vs. WPI

Game Preview: No. 3 Field Hockey vs. WPI

No. 3 Field Hockey vs. WPI
Saturday, October 21—12 p.m.
MacDowell Field—Babson Park, Mass.

Babson and WPI will meet for the 36th time on Saturday in a series that dates back to 1985. The Beavers are 20-15 all-time against the Engineers and have won six of the last seven contests between the teams going back to 2010.

Victoria Spofford '17 finished with a goal and an assist as then-eighth-ranked Babson pulled away to defeat WPI 4-0 on October 1, 2016, at MacDowell Field.

Mary-Lee Barboza scored the go-ahead goal with 10:39 left in regulation as the Engineers slipped past Babson, 3-2, on October 1, 2011, in Worcester. Sasha Marokhovsky finished with two goals for WPI, while Caroline Malone '15 scored once in each half for the Beavers.

WPI (9-4, 3-3 NEWMAC) blanked Anna Marioa, 6-0, on Thursday at Alumni Stadium and Norcross Track. The Engineers recorded one goal in the first half and five in the second half to complete the shutout. First-year Abby O'Sullivan (11-2-24) is the team's top goal scorer, while senior Amanada Richards (2-4-8) leads the team in assists. Junior goalkeeper Karen Mushrall has logged a 1.73 goals against average to go along with a .794 save percentage in 13 starts.

No. 3 Babson (15-2, 7-0 NEWMAC) extended their home winning streak to 14 with a 4-0 shutout of Gordon on Thursday. Senior Elise Towers, junior Catherine Gilman, first-year Maddy Paro each netted a goal in the victory. Junior Ashley Tango (10-13-34) and junior Lauren Drakeley (2-8-12) are first and second, respectively, in the NEWMAC in assists per game, while sophomore Tori Roche (10-3-23), Gilman (9-1-19) and senior Jacki Merrigan (6-2-14) have combined to score 10 game-winning goals. Sophomore Deirdre Barry, who is the only goalie in program history to record six or more shutouts in back-to-back seasons, has recorded a 0.71 goals against average and a .778 save percentage in 17 starts.

Merrigan, Towers and classmates Elena Bartholomew, Jessica Kelley and Julie Mortimer will be honored prior to their final NEWMAC home game on Saturday. The senior class has helped the program win three straight conference regular season titles, the 2016 league tournament chanpionship, and a school-record 21 games while becoming the first women's program in school history to reach the Final Four last fall.

The Beavers clinched at least a share of their third NEWMAC regular season title and with a win can finish conference play with a perfect 8-0 record for the second year in a row and fifth time since 2007.

With three points in Thursday's win over Gordon, Tango now ranks third in careers assists (34) and is tied for sixth in school history with 114 points. With 14 assists this fall she also is just three away from tying the program's single-season record. In addition to her success, Towers now ranks sixth on the program's all-time list with 43 goals and is eighth in Babson history with 102 points.

Through its first seven NEWMAC games, the Green and White has posted three shutouts and outscored its opponents 29-4.