Field hockey: No. 11 Michigan thumps No. 7 Louisville
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — No. 11-ranked Michigan closed out its regular season in style, using a strong second half to highlight a 4-1 win against No. 7 Louisville on Saturday afternoon at Phyllis Ocker Field. It is the Wolverines' third straight win against a ranked opponent.
Despite being outshot (6-2) and outcornered (5-0) in the first half, the Wolverines took the initial lead late in the frame before blowing it open with three goals in the second. Allie Sardo netted the game-winner — the first of her career — at the 24:10 mark, receiving the ball from Carly Bennett on the left side of the circle and pushing a slow-rolling, tight-angle shot just across the goal line.
The Wolverines scored twice in the opening 14 minutes of the second half to build a sizable 3-0 advantage. Sophomore Emma Way tallied her first of two in the contest at 43:10, redirecting a ball from the left post after graduate student Esther de Leijer threaded a pass through a crowd from just outside the top of the circle.
U-M took advantage of another flurry to score less than five minutes later, at 48:27, as freshman Fay Keijer sent a slow roller on net from in front, and Bennett tapped it in on the goal line.
Louisville broke up the shutout bid late with a high reverse chip at the 64:05 mark, but the Wolverines responded with an insurance tally just three minutes later at 67:08 to reestablish their three-goal cushion. Bennett drove the ball into the circle from the left side, pulling the Cardinal goalkeeper out of position, before feeding in front it to Way, who bounced a shot into the open cage.
The Cardinals narrowly outshot the Wolverines 10-8 and outcornered them 7-2. Junior goalkeeper Sam Swenson earned six saves in the Michigan cage, while Louisville goalkeeper Ayeisha McFerran stopped three of seven U-M shots on goal.