By: Alex Smith
BOSTON — On the back of two wins last week over American and Northeastern, the Boston University Terriers’ Field Hockey team (8-3) heads into this weekend’s crucial games maintaining their #17 national ranking.
Coach Starr’s squad will travel to Worcester on Friday to take on Holy Cross in a Patriot League matchup in the first contest of the inaugural Turnpike Trophy series.
The Terriers enter the game at the top of the league standings at 3-0, while the Crusaders check in at 1-1 in league play following their recent loss to American.
BU, led by reigning Patriot League offensive player of the week and senior captains Sofi Laurito, hope to stay perfect in conference play.
Fellow senior captain Rachel Coll earned Patriot League defensive player of week honors for her five-point weekend. Coll scored BU’s overtime winner against Northeastern en route to her second career defensive player of the week award.
The Crusaders (6-5) have made it hard for visitors to come out of Worcester with a victory, going a perfect 5-0 at home so far this season. They are paced by Maureen Connelly, who has 16 points on the season. In net for Holy Cross, goalkeeper Megan Inch leads the Patriot League with a 1.72 goals against average.
The game is set to start at 5:00 p.m. in Worcester and can be seen live on the Patriot League Network.
The Terriers will return to New Balance Field on Sunday to take on yet another ranked, non-conference opponent at home in the form of the #4 Duke Blue Devils. Duke and Terriers share identical 8-3 records, though Duke has struggled in Atlantic Coast Conference play so far, going 1-2. Those losses came against newly crowned #1 Syracuse and #7 Wake Forest.
The Blue Devils, who will also take on neighboring Boston College on Friday, are led by Ashley Kristen and Heather Morris, with 19 and 18 points respectively.
Sophomore Alyssa Chillano was also tabbed ACC defensive player of the week following Duke’s pair of shutouts against #9 Louisville and Longwood last weekend.
BU has struggled in their matchups against ranked teams, with all three of BU’s losses coming at the hands of teams inside the top 20. Duke has also suffered the same fate against top-ranked schools. Both teams will be looking to reverse this trend on Sunday.
The last meeting between Duke and BU finished 3-1 in the Blue Devil’s favor at New Balance in 2013. The result of the game will certainly impact either team’s position in the coaches’ poll. Game time is set for 1:00 p.m.