Field Hockey Brings Home MAC Title


Misericordia field hockey won the MAC Title for the first time ever.

Lena Williams, Reporter

The field hockey team won its first ever MAC Freedom championship Nov. 7. The game went into double overtime ending in a 4-3 victory over FDU-Florham.

Junior forward Suzhaunna Lerch and sophomore midfielder/forward Megan Yeager scored the first two goals of the game. Senior forward/midfielder Jennifer O’Neil also contributed to the victory by scoring the final two goals.  O’Neil was named the MAC Freedom Championship MVP.

The teams were head-to-head on the scoreboard throughout the game. The Devils got an early goal in the first few minutes, but the Cougars quickly responded with a goal. With 11 minutes left in the first half, the Cougars scored again, taking the lead at half-time 2-1.

Five minutes into the second half, the Cougars struck again increasing their lead to 3-1. However, FDU did not go down without a fight. They scored two more goals leading to overtime.

“At the end, they were tired but that is when you have to dig deep and push through it. It is all about mental toughness,” said coach Robyn Stahovic.

At the 95th minute of double overtime, senior defender Samantha Parlington assisted O’Neil, who ended the game with a goal from seven yards.

Stahovic, who has coached for 15 years, has twice led her team to the MAC Freedom Championship games but lost.

In 2014, her team got a bid and advanced to the Eastern College Athletic Conference but lost in the semi-final game.

“After the loss to Wilkes in the ECAC semi-final game, we promised ourselves that we were not going to make the same mistakes we made that season,” Stahovic said.

Stahovic said she repeats four words: sacrifice, dedication, discipline and determination, and her team keeps those words in the locker room.

The team had a rough start this season with an 0-8 losing streak, but  Stahovic said her team would not give up. “Trust the process to the end result,” said Stahovic.

As the season progressed, the Cougars began to win. Most games were away. “Winning on the road is hard, but beating a team on the road is tough,” she said. However, the Cougars fell short to the University of Rochester 1-2. Stahovic was not in the least bit disappointed, and she is planning  to bring home another MAC Freedom championship next season. She knows the players can reach that goal and many others.

“After this season, this shows how they can overcome any obstacle in their personal and professional lives in the future.”