Sept. 22, 2009

 

Courtesy of Big East

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Following a week without blemishes against ranked opponents, undefeated Connecticut and Syracuse moved up one spot apiece in the latest Kookaburra/NFHCA Division I National Field Hockey Coaches Poll. The Huskies jumped up to No. 5 for the third time in four polls, and the Orange jumped to No. 6, their highest ranking in a regular season poll this season. Providence earned its first national ranking since the preseason poll, debuting at No. 19. Louisville maintained its No. 16 position for the third consecutive week. Villanova also received votes.

No. 5 Connecticut extended its unbeaten streak to seven following a perfect 2-0 week.  The Huskies knocked off then-No. 12 Drexel 5-2 on Sept. 17, before opening BIG EAST play with a 4-0 win at Providence.  Backed by the nation’s number two scorer, senior Loren Sherer, UConn is holding the opposition to less than one goal (0.86) per game while averaging a BIG EAST-best 4.29 goals per game.  The Huskies will look to match last season’s 9-0 start when they host Harvard on Sept. 23 and No. 16 Louisville on Sept. 26.

No. 6 Syracuse collected its BIG EAST-leading fourth victory over a ranked opponent this season when it opened conference play with 3-2 a win at No. 16 Louisville on Sept. 18. The Orange extended their win streak to four with a 3-2 overtime victory over Michigan on Sept. 19. Syracuse also received one first place vote in the latest poll. SU will face another top-20 team when it hosts No. 19 Providence on Sept. 26 to open a six game homestand.    

No. 16 Louisville maintained its position for the third week in a row despite faltering in its BIG EAST opener. The Cardinals dropped a 3-2 decision to then-No. 7 Syracuse on Sept. 18. UofL rebounded on Sept. 20 with a 3-2 win over Michigan. Louisville returns to conference play in its only game of the week when it travels to No. 5 Connecticut on Sept. 26.  

Providence returned to the top-20 backed by a 2-1 victory over then-No. 4 Princeton. The Friars entered the game on a two-game skid following home losses to Northeastern on Sept. 16 and then-No 6. Connecticut on Sept. 19, while the Tigers traveled to Providence previously undefeated.  The win marked the highest ranked opponent PC has defeated since 2006. The Friars travel to New York this week for a pair of games against No. 6 Syracuse on Sept. 26 and Albany on Sept. 27.

Following a 2-0 week, Villanova received votes for the third consecutive week. The Wildcats earned wins over Rutgers (6-1) on Sept. 18 and Bucknell (4-2) on Sept. 20. VU will look to extend its three-game win streak in its only match of the week at Penn on Sept. 23. 

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