RINDGE, N.H. (October 18, 2017) – Despite facing the second-to-last defense in the league, statistically speaking, on Wednesday afternoon, the Franklin Pierce University field hockey team struggled to generate offensive chances at Sodexo Field. Fortunately, the Ravens turned in a stifling defensive performance of their own, as they held American International without a shot attempt on the afternoon. With the shutout, a 21st-minute goal by senior forward Carly Canavan (Kingston, N.Y.) held up, as Franklin Pierce posted a 1-0 win in Northeast-10 Conference play.
With the win, Franklin Pierce improves to 9-6 (6-4 NE10), while AIC falls to 2-13 (2-8 NE10).
With two regular-season games remaining, the Ravens are 1.5 games in front of Assumption for the sixth and final spot in the NE10 Championship and control their own destiny. With wins in each of its final two games -- one of which is against Assumption -- Franklin Pierce would claim its first postseason berth since 2011, regardless of the results of the rest of the league.
As of press time, the Ravens were also just one game in the loss column behind fifth-place Merrimack, which plays at first-place Stonehill on Wednesday night. If Franklin Pierce can catch Merrimack, it holds the tiebreaker between the two, on the strength of a 2-1 win over the Warriors on Sept. 23.
With her goal, Canavan became the program's all-time leading scorer. She pushed her career points total to 75, breaking a tie at the top of the record book with Tia Levins '12. It was also Canavan's 31st career goal, which leaves her three behind Levins' school record.
In a game which was lacking in scoring chances, or even sustained pressure at either end of the field, the only goal came off of a penalty corner in the 21st minute. The Ravens worked the ball around to the edge of the circle on the right side for sophomore midfielder Jessica Greeley (Winslow, Maine). Greeley's shot from there was blocked, but the ball fell to the stick of junior forward Dayna Kowesky (Leominster, Mass.) approximately 10 feet in front of the right post. Kowesky drew AIC senior goalkeeper Alexis Torosian out of her cage and then dished the ball into the middle for Canavan, who had an easy finish into the empty goal for her fifth score of the season.
For Franklin Pierce, the corner attempt which resulted in the goal was the only one on which the team was able to generate so much as a shot attempt. The Ravens came up completely empty on their other seven penalty corners, and finished with just six shot attempts and four shots on goal on the afternoon. Head coach Zoe Adkins made her displeasure with the lack of organization known, as she took the unorthodox step of calling a timeout immediately after Franklin Pierce scored its goal to air her grievances with the team.
Senior goalkeeper Meaghan Williams (Salem, N.H.) did not face a shot on the day, but still picked up the win (9-6), as well as her fourth shutout of the season. It marked her 29th career win and 11th career shutout, to extend her program records in both categories. With one more win, Williams would become the first goalkeeper in program history to win 10 games in a season.
At the other end of the field, Torosian (1-13) made four saves against five shots on goal and suffered the loss in front of the cage for AIC.
The Ravens return to the field on Saturday, Oct. 21, when they travel to Bentley for an NE10 contest. Game time is set for noon at Bentley University Turf Field in Waltham, Mass.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce field hockey apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).