Boston College field hockey has been a tale of two teams this fall. One team is the undefeated Eagles, which outlast their non-conference opponents with an impressive consistency. The other is a winless squad that failed to make a single mark in the win column in the ACC. These Eagles knew they were heading into their final opportunity to catch that elusive first win in their ever-competitive conference.
Riding a three-game winning streak into Kentner Stadium, things looked promising for the No. 9 Eagles (11-6, 0-6 ACC) heading into their matchup against No. 13 Wake Forest (9-6, 2-3 ACC). Looking to continue momentum built up against Harvard, Northeastern, and BU, the girls came into the game with a sense of optimism. Unfortunately, BC was never truly able to find its rhythm, especially on the offensive front.
BC failed to get on the scoreboard, and started the game flat-footed as it could not manage to record a single shot attempt or penalty corner in the first half. Wake Forest, meanwhile, had a total of 17 shots and cruised to a 3-0 victory.
Wake Forest was brought to victory behind the stellar play of junior forward Jule Grahoff. It took just under 15 minutes for the Demon Deacons to get on the board when Grahoff found Kelsey Gill for her first goal of the season. 10 minutes later, Grahoff managed another assist on a cross into the inner circle that was deflected in by Nicola Pluta.
From there, the Wake Forest defense took over. The next shot attempt from BC came two minutes into the second half. Although the Eagles managed to break through their shooting drought, their success was short lived. Just two minutes later, it was Grahoff again, this time scoring one of her own off of a short corner from Megan Anderson. The second half goal was the dagger in a decisive victory for the Deamon Deacons, who carried the momentum the rest of the way.
The loss for the Eagles was overshadowed by the phenomenal play of goalie Sarah Dwyer, who recorded nine saves on the night, seven coming in the second half. The total was nearly a career high for Dywer, who had managed 10 saves in a 2-1 overtime loss to North Carolina earlier in the season.
With such a strong performance throughout the entire season, it is hard to fathom how the top-10 Eagles failed to record a conference victory. Despite the loss, the girls still hold an 11-6 record. Nearing the ACC tournament, the Eagles will need to make changes in order to compete against the nation’s best.
Head coach Kelly Doton was frustrated after the loss, but was hopeful for the future of the team. “The ACC is tough and mental lapses can turn into opponents’ goals very quickly,” Doton said. “The better team won today. We have to reset and refocus heading into next weekend against UConn and then the ACC Tournament.”
Featured Image by Celine Lim / Heights Staff