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Tribe Field Hockey Opens Conference Play Home on Sunday
Updated: Wednesday 09/28/2013 (ET)
by Jacob Skipper
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The William and Mary field hockey team opens conference play Sunday afternoon at Busch Field, hosting James Madison at 1 p.m.  The top four teams in the league standings will earn a spot in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament.

Live Stats

Scouting the Tribe
W&M is 3-5 overall, after downing Davidson 1-0 a week ago.  The Tribe has four players over the five-point mark so far this season, led by sophomore Pippin Saunders (Mittagong, NSW) with two goals and four assists.  Senior Taylor Hodge (Louisville, Ky.) has three goals and a helper, while junior Brittany Hopkins (Springfield, Va.) has two of each and freshman Olivia Hajek (Charlottesville, Va.) has two more goals and an assist.  On defense, Cate Johnson (Charlottesville, Va.) has a 2.5 GAA and 21 saves, and junior Kelsea Hull (Fredericksburg, Va.) earned her first career defensive save against Michigan.

Scouting the Dukes
JMU is 5-4 on the season, but just 1-4 away from Harrisonburg with a 6-1 loss at No. 4 Virginia last Wednesday.  The Dukes are being led on offense by the prolific Taylor West with 10 goals nad three assists, while Lena Wimmert has 2/3 of the time in goal with a 2.17 GAA and 21 saves.

The Series
W&M trails in the all-time series with JMU, 18-36-6, with its last win coming in 2010 in Williamsburg by a 2-1 score.  The Tribe and the Dukes are the only two teams left who began play in the South Atlantic Conference in the fall of 1985 (became the CAA in 1991).

News and Notes
- W&M is 19-9 all-time in conference openers, and 20-8 in the first league contest in Williamsburg.

- This is the first time since 2006 that the Tribe has started conference play against any team other than Northeastern.

- The last time W&M's first CAA contest was against James Madison was in 2001.

- Five of the Tribe's goals this year have been the first scores of their players' career.  Newly minted scorers include senior Giovanna Golen (Charlotte, N.C.), redshirt-junior Navneet Singh (Auckland, N.Z.), sophomore Esty Byrd (Charlotte, N.C.), and freshmen Hajek and Maria Pastor (Burke, Va.).

- In preseason voting, Saunders was named to the CAA all-conference team, alongside captain Jesse Ebner (Sinking Spring, Pa.).  Senior captain Chaney Manganello (Richmond, Va.) was an honorable-mention selection.

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