NORTON, Mass. – The Wheaton College field hockey team has earned the No. 5 seed in this week's Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Field Hockey Tournament and will travel to No. 4 Bridgewater State for a quarterfinal game on Wednesday, Nov. 9 at 6 p.m. at Swneson Field. Admission is $5 for the general public and $3 for Wheaton students with a valid ID.
The Lyons (10-8) enter the playoffs riding a three-game win streak following a 2-1 overtime win at Union on Saturday, Oct. 29. The Bears (12-6) were eliminated from the Little East Conference (LEC) Tournament by Westfield State, 5-1, last Wednesday.
"The coaching staff is really happy that our team was selected to the ECAC Tournament this year," said Lyons head coach Rebecca Begley. "The team has battled back from being 5-6 overall and 1-3 in the NEWMAC in September to 6-3 and 3-1 in October. We finished tied for fourth place in the NEWMAC with four teams at 4-4, only to lose the tiebreaker. The team has been waiting anxiously for over two weeks about the possibility of postseason play, so they are giddy to lace up again and participate in post season play."
Wheaton is led by senior Emily Asack (Stoughton, Mass./Stoughton), who led the team in goals (15) and points (36). She potted a team-high five game-winning goals and also dished out six assists, which tied for the team lead with sophomore Emily Chick (Bangor, Maine/Bangor). Sophomore Jenna Rocha (Rehoboth, Mass./Dighton-Rehoboth Regional) is second in goals (nine) and points (23), and tallied two GWG. In goal, sophomore Ellie Massengill (Amherst, Mass./Amherst) went 9-8 with a 2.98 goals against average (GAA) and a .733 save percentage.
The Bears are led by junior Shelby Farmland (Fiskdale, Mass./Tantasqua Regional) in both goals (15) and points (35). Classmate Breanna Clement (Pittsfield, Maine/Maine Central Institute) was next with 22 points (8-6-22), followed by junior Beth Phillips (Worcester, Mass./Saint Peter Marian) with 18 points (5-8-18). Junior Cassie Johansen (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y./Comsewogue) went 12-6 with a 1.79 GAA and a .737 save percentage.
Wheaton will be making its fifth appearance in the ECAC Tournament and first since 2007. The Lyons own a 1-4 mark in the tournament, including a 1-0 win over Western New England in the semifinals in 2006. They lead the all-time series with the Bears, 14-12-1, and have won five of the last seven meetings – including four via shutout. Earlier this season, the Bears defeated the Lyons 2-1 in Bridgewater.
Plymouth State and the University of New England are seeded No. 1 and No. 2 in the tournament, respectively, and receive a bye into the semifinals. The winner of the Wheaton/Bridgewater State game will face the Panthers while the winner of the No. 3 Mount Holyoke/No. 6 Worcester State will play the Nor'easters. Both semifinal games as well as the final will be played at PSU.
Click HERE to view the complete ECAC Field Hockey Tournament bracket.