Rock field hockey finishes tough season, looks forward to future

Published by , Author: Ben Matos - Rocket Contributor, Date: November 6, 2016
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The Slippery Rock University field hockey team finished the season 6-12 overall and 3-7 in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) and missed the playoffs for the second straight year.

Slippery Rock’s finish this season marked the seventh straight year The Rock has finished with six wins or more. Despite a bittersweet ending to the year, The Rock had some great moments as a team and saw some great play out of its impact players and newcomers alike.

SRU had to play some tough teams this season and fought through a lot of adversity.

“The team was very resilient throughout the season and no matter what focused on our goals and trying to achieve them,” Rock head coach Julie Swiney said.

Slippery Rock played several tough opponents this season including 10 that were nationally ranked at some point this year.

The team accomplished some goals and so did some of its seniors, Megan McKay and Renee Rosenblum.

“I think our team played well this season despite missing the playoffs. We accomplished many goals we had set for ourselves and grew as a program in many ways that you can’t see in the wins and loss columns,” McKay said.

McKay had a stellar year for The Rock. She finished the year ranking third in the PSAC in total points (26), third in points per game (1.44) and fourth in goals (11). It was also the second year in a row that she earned an All-PSAC honor. McKay will also finish her career at SRU as a likely two-time All-America honoree, two-time All-PSAC selection, the holder of Rock career records in total points (81), points per game (1.11), goals (33) and assists (15) and one of the greatest offensive players to ever wear the Green and White.

Another team leader, Rosenblum, agreed that although the team missed playoffs, it still continued to improve.

“We didn’t get the outcome we wanted, but overall improved throughout the year,” Rosenblum said.

Rosenblum finished fourth on the team in points (7) with three goals and one assist.

SRU had six players finish the year with five or more points including McKay, Rosenblum, junior Kailee Krupski (10), freshman Savanna Robinson (8), sophomore Hannah Downing (6) and freshman Hannah Shirk (5).

The Rock also had some great defense played by its back-line of sophomore Liz Wolfe and junior Kayla Mack. Wolfe led the team with eight defensive saves while Mack followed with five. Mack also earned her first career All-PSAC honor.

In goal, junior Nicole Bream played every minute for SRU and recorded 114 saves on 259 shots faced. Bream was third in the PSAC in saves and fourth in the PSAC in saves per game (6.33).

Despite the finish and the tough opponents The Rock faced, Swiney said she saw a lot of growth in her team this season including several of the underclassmen. Underclassmen accounted for 32 of The Rock’s 76 total points.

Robinson and Shirk accounted for 11 total points including three goals and two, respectively.

The Rock lost four seniors at the end of the season including McKay, Rosenblum, Michelle Couch and Kayla Klaus, but the majority of its roster will return next year with a hopefully bright future ahead.

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