|University of New England||Western New England University|
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. — Vonde Saunders found the back of the net in the 8th minute to lift the University of New England to a 1-0 Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) field hockey victory over Western New England University on Tuesday afternoon (Oct. 18) at Golden Bear Stadium.
The win secures the top seed in the upcoming CCC Championship for the Nor’easters (14-2, 9-0 CCC), who won for the fifth straight outing. Big Blue, which was the second team also receiving votes in the latest National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Top 20 Poll released earlier in the day, has now taken each of the 16 all-time meetings against the Golden Bears (7-7, 6-3 CCC).
It is the fourth consecutive year that UNE will own at least a share of the regular-season title.
The deciding score came on just the second shot attempt for the visitors, as Saunders got behind the WNEU defense and pushed her team-leading 16th marker of the campaign past Golden Bears goalie Grace Trupe.
UNE finished with a 17-5 advantage in shots, forcing Trupe into 12 stops just to keep things close. On the opposite end, Holly Smith recorded her fifth shutout (9th shared) of the year without having to record a save.