The Drexel University women’s field hockey team lost their season opener to the Virginia Commonwealth University Rams 1-0 in Richmond, Virginia Aug. 25.
The Dragons’ defense was strong and aggressive. Junior goalkeeper Erin Gilchrist stopped six shots from entering the goal while her defense teammates helped hold the Rams to one goal throughout the game.
The only goal of the game came from the Rams freshman Maite Sturm in the first half. The senior goalkeeper for the Rams, Chessa Kownurko, stopped five shots from the Dragons. This was her first career shutout.
Drexel sophomore Tess Bernheimer took two shots after penalty corners, but both were stopped by Kownurko. Bernheimer was the leading shooter for the Dragons. Teammates Tess Horan and Chandler McFeeley took one shot each.
The Rams outshot the Dragons 13-6, but the Dragons had five of their shots on goal.
The Dragons remained in Richmond for another game against the University of Richmond Spiders Aug. 27 and took home their first win with a final score of 2-1.
Bernheimer and junior Megan Wiest connected on offense as Bernheimer scored both goals for the Dragons and Wiest assisted on both.
Wiest and junior Delaney Baxendale both came out strong in the first half taking shots on goal at 2:58 and 8:56 into play after penalty corners by Horan, but both shots were saved by Spiders goalkeeper Felicitas Heinzel.
The third penalty corner by Horan at 9:23 into play was converted into a goal by Bernheimer.
Drexel converted on one of their three penalty corners in the first half.
With 25 minutes left in the first half, the Spiders took three shots on goal all of which were saved by Gilchrist to allow the Dragons to take a 1-0 lead going into halftime.
Freshman Florentine Beelaerts van Blokland had the sole goal for the Spiders at 39:39 in the second half to tie the two teams 1-1.
Gilchrist came away with seven saves for the Dragons, four of which were in the second half, allowing only one shot to pass her.
The Dragons played Saint Joseph’s University Sept. 3. The Hawks outshot the Dragons 17-6 with 13 of their shots being on goal. Drexel was held scoreless coming away with a 3-0 loss.
Bernheimer and Weist both recorded two shots on goal while Horan came away with one. Gilchrist had 10 saves against the Hawks.
The Dragons returned to Buckley Field and brought home a win Sept. 5 against the Rider University Broncs.
Throughout the first half, the Dragons were aggressive offensively. Tess Horan had her first goal of the season assisted by freshman Chandler McFeeley 11:48 into the first half to put the Dragons on the scoreboard first.
Junior Katie Pappas scored unassisted for her first goal of the season 31:22 into the first half. The Dragons led into the second 2-0.
The Dragons held the Broncs scoreless until 53:20 when freshman Marion Waterkeyn scored. The Dragons were still up 2-1.
They continued to defend their field as Gilchrist saved three shot attempts from the Broncs in the second half.
Next up for the Dragons was a game against the Brown University Bears Sept. 8.
Much like the game against Rider, the Dragons scored two goals in the first half and then defended their lead in the second half holding Brown to only one goal. The Dragons took their second straight win on their home field 2-1.
The Dragons outshot the Bears 16-8. Tess Horan and Megan Wiest both scored during the first half. Horan’s both shots of the game were on goal while Wiest took four shots with two on goal.
The Dragons had a wide spread of players take shots throughout the game showing their depth offensively. Sophomore Maria Palmieri shot wide early in the first half before Wiest made her first goal.
Bernheimer took a her first shot of the game 25:43 into play, but it was blocked. Eight seconds later, McFeeley recovered the ball and took a shot on goal, but it was saved by goalkeeper Katie Hammaker. Junior Rebecca Weinstock took a shot on goal that was saved, but Tess Horan was able to score off the rebound.
With 38 seconds left in the first half, junior Mary Conroy took her only shot of the game, but Hammaker got the save.
The Dragons took seven shots in the second half trying to increase their lead over Brown. Each shot was blocked, traveled wide or was saved by Hammaker, but that didn’t stop the Dragons from continuing to put pressure on Brown’s defense.
The Bears were held to one goal in the second half from Anagha Nayak for her third of the season.
The Dragons traveled to Easton, Pennsylvania to play the Lafayette College Leopards Sept. 10. They fell 4-1 after being outshot 15-5. Erin Gilchrist had four saves for the Dragons.
On the first day of Welcome Week, Sept. 15, the Dragons will host the University of Pennsylvania Quakers.
During Welcome Week, the Dragons will travel to Washington, D.C. to play American University Sept. 17 and then to West Long Branch, New Jersey for a game against the Monmouth University Hawks Sept. 22.
The Dragons return to Buckley Field Sept. 24 for a game against Bucknell Univeristy at noon.