After consecutive shutouts this past weekend, the field hockey team moved up three spots in the latest National Field Hockey Coaches Association poll to 11th.
After blanking Bucknell, 2-0, on Saturday to take over sole possession of first place in the Patriot League standings, the Leopards defeated Rutgers by that same tally to give Patriot League Goalkeeper of the Week Jessica Deutsch ’15 her third shutout of the season.
Lafayette is 12-1 overall and became the first team to clinch a spot in this year’s Patriot League tournament Nov. 2-3.
“It is great to clinch a Patriot League tournament berth with two league games remaining, and we are getting recognition for our consistent results, which is a nice reward,” head coach Andrew Griffiths says. “We know, however, that we clearly have some areas to improve in how we are playing, and this will definitely keep us focused in our last three regular season games.”
Deutsch, Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week Brittany Blass ’15, and the Lafayette defense have been impressive this season, allowing only 14 goals in 13 games. The defense allowed only three shots on goal versus Bucknell and five shots total against Rutgers. Deutsch’s league-best 1.06 goals-against average is fifth in the nation.
The Leopards’ co-captains have led the team emotionally and statistically. Patriot League Offensive Player of the Year Deanna DiCroce ’13 has tallied nine goals and nine assists for 27 points, while Emily Valeo ’13 has notched six goals and 12 assists totaling 24 points. Valeo’s 12 assists are good enough for fourth nationally in assists per game (0.92).
Lafayette continues Patriot League play with a trip to Worcester, Mass., for a matchup with Holy Cross noon Saturday.