Field Hockey Women Take Key ODAC Win From Generals

Valerie Landis, EMU's lone senior, scored the first goal in the women's 2-1 win.
Valerie Landis, EMU's lone senior, scored the first goal in the women's 2-1 win.

On a windy Homecoming afternoon, Eastern Mennonite hosted Washington & Lee in a key conference match.  The Lady Royals scored the first two goals and held on for a 2-1 victory.

EMU controlled much of the play early on, but neither team managed a shot for almost 13 minutes.  Defender Bethany Hench (Carlisle, PA/Carlisle) swatted away a slow roller for a defensive save 12:42 in.

Nicole Bencsik (Telford, PA/Souderton) cracked the women's first shot two minutes later, which was also cleared on a defensive save.

The Lady Royals continued to get the best looks at the cage and finally took the edge just 3:27 before halftime.  Midfielder Camille Williams (Media, PA/Delaware County Christian) sent a long cross from outside the circle and Valerie Landis (Quakertown, PA/Quakertown) drove it home for the 1-0 lead.

EMU was relentless in the second and Jenessa Derstine (Harleysville,PA/Christopher Dock) made it 2-0 in the 43rd minute with an assist from Jenna Longenecker (Lancaster, PA/Conestoga Valley).

The Generals finally came alive and cut the lead in half with a powerful drive from Lizz Dye off a corner, making it 2-1 in the 56th minute.

The women nearly scored a couple times shortly after WLU's goal, but neither team would score again.

Eastern Mennonite dominated the shots tally 22-5 and 13-3 on goal.  Mary Beth Danaher (Matoaca, VA/Matoaca) had one save.  Landis was a force to be reckoned with on offense, leading all players with nine shots, including five on goal.

Pre-game ceremonies honored EMU's parents as well as Landis on Senior/Parent Recognition.  Sara Nissley, a 1997-2000 player who was inducted in the Hall of Honor earlier Saturday, was honored beforehand and led the players out on the international walkout.

The important win ups EMU to 8-7 overall and 4-1 in the ODAC.  As a result, the women stay tied with Randolph-Macon and Virginia Wesleyan.  Next Wednesday, the Lady Royals hit the road to take on the Marlins in Virginia Beach.