By Christian Hince | September 10, 2023
On Friday, the University at Albany field hockey team stayed in control for nearly the entire game in a 3-0 home victory against Hofstra University. The win snaps a two-game skid for the Great Danes who are now 2-2, while the Pride fall to 2-3.
Midfielders Allison Smisdom (left) and Floor De Ruiter (middle) both scored against Hofstra.
Photo Credit: Brent Warzocha/UAlbany Athletics
“Very good effort today; I know the heat was a challenge for both teams,” said UAlbany head coach Phil Sykes, with the temperature sitting above 80°F across the game’s runtime.
UAlbany struck early. Following a scramble for the ball off a penalty corner, Floor De Ruiter scooped it up and fired it into the back right corner of the net from short range, putting the Great Danes on the board just over three minutes into the first quarter. She finished the game with four shots.
Ruiter was also part of a stifling defensive effort that kept Hofstra off the ball with prowess and made crossing midfield difficult. On the day, the Pride had just three shots on goal in contrast to UAlbany’s 14. They came closest in the early fourth, when midfielder Tara McNally fielded a corner shot and sent the ball just over the right edge of the net.
While the Great Danes didn’t take advantage of every opportunity, they exploded at the end of the third quarter for two goals. First, defender Mara Küskes received an endline insert in the circle, and with her back to a Hofstra defender, she spun on her foot and used her separation to fire the ball into the back left corner of the goal with 1:40 left in the period.
Then with seconds left in the quarter, Allison Smisdom received a penalty corner pass before launching the ball into the back of the net. Smisdom, who scored her fourth of the season on Friday, led the Great Danes with five shots.
This was UAlbany’s second shutout win of the season after wiping Stonehill College 5-0 at home on opening weekend. Next, they visit Cornell on Sunday (9/10).