Bobcats cruise past Radford in home opener

By Bez Saciri | September 2nd, 2012 | Category: Sports, Women’s Recap |

After splitting the first two games of their season, the Ohio field hockey team made their 2012 home opener one not to forget, as freshman Luli Gomez Teruel’s five goals led Ohio to a convincing 9-0 win over Radford.

Even with two rain delays that totaled 105 minutes, Ohio completely dominated the game, from the first whistle to the very last. The Bobcats put the pressure on Radford early and often and never let up.

Head coach Neil Macmillan spoke about the weather and how big of a challenge that it was during the game.

“It was challenging early on, going on and off,” said Macmillan. “That was something we were not really prepared for, but we adapted really well.”

In the fourth minute, Taylor Brown took over fifth on the all-time goal-scoring charts at Ohio University, as she hit a rocket into the roof of the net to give the Bobcats a quick 1-0 lead.

“I did not know about that until a couple of days ago, but it’s such an awesome feeling to know that I’m up there with the top players that have been here at Ohio,” said Brown.

That was Brown’s only goal of the game though, as her teammates took the scoring load off  her shoulders.

The biggest contributor to the offense was Argentine Gomez Teruel, whose five-goal performance did not come as a surprise to Brown.

“She did great,” said Brown. “In practice, we usually find each other well, and usually she’s always there in that right spot, and I’m able to find her.”

In the first half, Gomez Teruel managed to score off of a penalty shot, which she coolly placed in the top right corner, and once off of a pass by the net from Brown. Brown assisted on three of the five goals by Gomez Teruel, and made a picture-perfect pass off of a fast break which was between the goalkeeper’s legs and the Argentine’s stick.

Ohio (2-1) has shown that they can compete with anyone when things break their way. Despite their shocking 6-0 loss at seventh-ranked Syracuse last Sunday, the Bobcats practiced hard this week and brought it all together today in a scintillating performance.

“Coming off that loss against Syracuse, we had a really tough week of practice,” said Brown. “We really put things into perspective and we just came out here with everything we had. I think we really capitalized on everything that we worked on.”

Even though the offense will take the headlines, the Ohio defense played their part as well. Radford (0-3) had three shots in the entire game, and all of those came off of penalty corners. Their execution was poor, and that allowed sophomore goalkeeper Brittany Walker to post her first career shutout.

Brown also spoke about the team’s execution during the game.

“We have always had the ability to execute, but I think today we just stepped it up another level,” commented Brown.

Macmillan was full of praise for the very young Highlanders side.

“Full credit to them, they fought,” said Macmillan. “They are a young, young team. They had two juniors who started, no seniors, and the majority of the team is sophomores.”

The Bobcats’ next two games will take place in Bloomington, Indiana, as they will face the Louisville Cardinals on Saturday, Sept. 8, and then they will take on the Hoosiers of Indiana on Sunday, Sept. 9. Those games will start at 2 p.m. and 1 p.m., respectively. Ohio’s next home game will take place on Wednesday, September 12, as they will take on the Buckeyes of Ohio State. Start time is at 7 p.m.

Player of the game: Luli Gomez Teruel. An incredible performance from the freshman from Argentina. She looked lively the whole match and showed her composure when she scored from the penalty spot. She and Taylor Brown make a deadly offensive combination for Ohio, and they will look to continue to try and put teams away early in matches. Macmillan summed it up best when speaking about her performance: “When it rains, it pours.”

Radford Verdict: This is a performance that the Highlanders would like to forget. Ohio came out firing on all cylinders, and they were on the back foot all match long. They are a young team, and they will undergo growing pains, but there is some talent in the side. It may take them a couple of years to finally learn how to win field hockey matches.

Ohio Verdict: An extremely efficient performance from the Bobcats. They never let up, and their execution was flawless. It was an historic day for Taylor Brown, and Gomez Teruel will never forget this performance. Brittany Walker was hardly tested, and that says a lot about Ohio’s defense. They will look to carry their momentum to Bloomington, Indiana, where they will be tested by much stronger opposition.

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