BOONE, N.C. -- Goals by Blue Hen juniors Clare O’Malley and Hannah Pepper allowed the University of Delaware field hockey team to erase an early deficit and defeat Appalachian State, 2-1, Saturday afternoon.
The Blue Hens, who improved to 4-6 on the season, have now won three of their last four games, with their only loss in that span coming at second-ranked Princeton. The Mountaineers, playing their home opener, dropped their third straight game while falling to 2-6 on the campaign.
Dana Westmore gave Appalachian State the lead with an unassisted goal, her first tally of the season, 10:35 into the contest. But Delaware would immediately answer, as O’Malley scored on a shot from the left side of the cage just 17 seconds later to knot the contest at 1-1. The goal was the first of the season for O’Malley, who now has five for her career.
The teams remained deadlocked until midway through the second half, when Pepper (at right) started a Blue Hen penalty corner. After inserting a pass, Pepper eventually collected the ball near the left side of the cage and delivered to put Delaware in front for good with 18:03 remaining. Pepper’s game-winning tally was her second goal of the season and third of her career.
Blue Hen junior goalkeeper Sarah Scher and the Delaware defense would make the lead stand up, shutting down the Mountaineers the rest of the way. Scher won her fourth game of the year while making five saves on the day. Mountaineers goalie Sarah Anderson stopped eight shots while allowing both UD goals.
Delaware carried the majority of the play during the contest, holding a 14-8 shot advantage and an 11-6 edge in penalty corners.
The Blue Hens improved to 2-0 all-time against Appalachian State, with both wins coming in each of the last two seasons by identical 2-1 scores.
Delaware is right back in action on Sunday when the Blue Hens travel to 14th-ranked Wake Forest for a 1 p.m. match with the Demon Deacons, the sixth ranked opponent UD will have faced this season.