NEWARK, Del. -- The University of Delaware field hockey team looks to extend its current three-game win streak as the Blue Hens close out their regular season on Friday when they host James Madison in a 5 p.m. game at Rullo Stadium.
The game will be the Blue Hens’ Senior Day, as seniors Nikki Onorato, Carley Hecht and Tory Sharpless will be honored in a pregame ceremony.
The Blue Hens dropped their first three conference games but have rebounded with three consecutive victories, defeating Hofstra, 2-1, Drexel, 4-2, and Towson, 4-0, to clinch a berth in the upcoming Colonial Athletic Association Tournament. Delaware is 7-10 overall and is tied for fourth place in the league with a 3-3 conference mark.
Delaware sophomore defender Kelsey McKee leads the Blue Hens with 10 goals and 22 points this season, and she recorded her first career hat trick during last Friday’s victory over the Dragons. Freshman midfielder Michaela Patzner ranks second on the squad with six goals and 13 points, while junior forward Toni Popinko is third on the team with 10 points on three goals and four assists.
Junior Heather Hartman leads the Blue Hens with eight assists, tied for fourth most in the CAA. Fellow junior Sarah Scher has started 12 games in goal for Delaware, posting 65 saves and a 2.95 goals against average.
The visiting Dukes enter Friday’s game with a 9-7 overall record, and are also tied for fourth place in the league standings with a 3-3 conference mark. Junior forward Rachael Wein and freshman forward Taylor West have each posted six goals and three assists to tie for the team lead with 15 points, while Dana Allaband leads James Madison with seven assists. Dukes freshman goalkeeper Lena Wimmert is the league leader with a 1.09 GAA and an .832 save percentage.
James Madison is 8-5 all-time against Delaware, with all 13 meeting coming since the 1999 season. The Dukes have won three straight over the Blue Hens, including a pair of victories last season: a 1-0 win in the regular season in Harrisonburg and a 2-1 triumph in the CAA Tournament First Round.
The Blue Hens could finish anywhere from second to sixth in the league standings, heading into next week’s CAA Tournament which will be held on November 1-4.