The William and Mary field hockey team continues its four-match homestand Tuesday night, when the Tribe hosts No. 6-ranked Virginia at 7 p.m. at Busch Field. A new national poll will be released Tuesday afternoon ahead of the game.
Scouting the Tribe
William and Mary is 5-0 and winner of two shutouts in a row this season, following a 4-0 triumph against Radford on Friday night. Seniors Christine Johnson (Williamsburg, Va.) and Allison Moran (Wynnewood, Pa.) are leading the offense so far in 2012, with 12 points (5g, 2a) and 11 points (4g, 3a), respectively. On the other end of the field, fifth-year senior Elizabeth Frey (Virginia Beach, Va.) has four wins in goal and hasn't allowed a goal in the last 142:54.
Scouting the Cavaliers
Virginia is ranked sixth in the latest national polls, and 5-2 overall after beating No. 20 Michigan State and falling to No. 14 Northeastern last weekend. The Cavaliers are led by Olympian Paige Selenski, with 11 goals and eight assists, and Elly Buckley (10g, 4a). On defense, UVA is allowing just over two goals per game, with Jenny Johnstone earning the majority of the minutes in goal with a 2.19 GAA and .571 save percentage.
W&M is 15-25-2 all-time against Virginia, with a 7-10-1 record in Williamsburg. Last fall, the Cavaliers were able to prevail narrowly, 4-3. The last time the Tribe beat UVA was in 2004, a 5-4 upset over the then-12th ranked Cavaliers.
News and Notes
- Tuesday's match will feature two of the winningest field hockey coaches ever in Tribe mentor Peel Hawthorne '80 and Virginia's Michele Madison. Both coaches have 301 victories in their career, and in a case of cosmic timing, each won their 300th victory about an hour apart on Sunday, Sept. 2. The Cavaliers beat Old Dominion at roughly 5 p.m. for Madison's 300th, and the Tribe completed a shutout of Liberty at 5:58 p.m. for Hawthorne's.
- This is the first time in the series that W&M has hosted Virginia in two consecutive games since 1983-85.
- Fans at the game will likely see many helping hands, as these two teams are the top-ranked schools for assists in the NCAA this fall. W&M leads the nation with 4.40 assists per game and UVA is right behind at 4.23.
- In the first NCAA statistical release, the College ranks among the national top-10 in every offensive category. In fact, other than saves per game and save percentage, the Tribe ranks top-10 in every statistics category.
- Only five players in the entire country have scored four goals or more in a game this season, and three will be on the field on Tuesday. W&M's Christine Johnson earned her hat trick plus one in the opener against Davidson, while Virginia's Elly Buckley and Paige Selenski each scored four in a 14-0 romp over Towson.
- The Tribe has been getting off to a fast start so far in 2012, out-shooting opponents 74-8 in the first half and owning a 40-3 advantage in penalty corners. That offensive edge has translated into a 15-2 goal differential in the first 35 minutes.
- The Tribe's four-match road swing to start the year was the second-longest ever, and it was also the most successful in school history with a 4-0 mark. The longest road trip to start a season is five, shared by the 2002 team which started 1-4 and the 1999 squad's 3-2 mark. The Tribe also began with four matches on the road in 1992 (going 3-1), 1983 (2-2), and 1981 (1-1-2).
- W&M's current 5-0 start to the year is the best since the Tribe started with five wins in 2006. The only season-opening win streaks better than five came in 2000, when the Tribe won seven to start the year before going to the NCAA Tournament for the first time; as well as 1978 and 1979. Both of those years began with nine victories, and the 1978 team also had a tie in the 10th game.
- Christine Johnson was named the CAA co-Player of the Week on Aug. 28, after scoring four goals and a defensive save to lead her team to a 5-1 win over Davidson. Johnson is the seventh player in school history to score four goals in a single game, and the first since Katie Silverthorne '02 in 2001. She is the first Tribe player to be named the conference Player of the Week since October of 2007.
-The Tribe had three players earn spots on the pre-season all-conference team, the most ever for a W&M squad. Leah Zamesnik was one of 11 players selected to the first-team, while sophomores Jesse Ebner and Emma Clifton were both named honorable-mention.
-Six of W&M's 17 regular season opponents earned a spot in the most recent top-25 Penn Monto/NFHCA national poll. Old Dominion led the way with a No.-5 ranking, and No. 6 Virginia also checked into the top-10. Boston University (12th) and Wake Forest (13th) are also ranked, as are Northeastern (No. 14) and Drexel (No. 18).