After being shut out by Duke on Saturday, the field hockey team bounced back and overpowered Davidson in Sunday’s regular season finale, led by a dominant effort by Rebecca Barry in her senior game.
The offense struggled to create opportunities in a 2-0 loss to sixth-ranked Duke, but looked like an entirely different team on Sunday in front of a crowd of about 150 people. Barry lit up the scoreboard with five goals, and she sliced through the Davidson defense to get to the goal at will.
“What makes Rebecca so special is that she really has an indomitable spirit about her,” head coach Gina Lucido said of her star player after the game. “Every time you think you've seen it all from her, it’s not even close. She is a unique young lady and has a God-given gift to make things happen just when the team needs it to happen.”
Barry’s first two goals both came fewer than five minutes into the contest, and she capitalized on every opportunity throughout the rest of the game to cushion the Spides' lead.
As for the rest of the team, senior Blair Kline had two assists, junior Taylor Deitrick had three shots and freshman Hannah Thomson had the only other Spider goal in the 6-1 rout. Davidson’s lone goal came in the final minutes of the contest, blowing the Richmond shutout, but hardly putting a damper on the win.
The win moved the Spiders to 6-2 in the conference, and puts them in a tie for second place in the A-10 standings with Lock Haven and Saint Francis.
The conference tiebreaker rule rewards the Spiders with the second seed in the A-10 tournament because of their win against first-place Massachusetts. They will play Saint Francis in the conference semifinals next Friday, with Lock Haven facing Massachusetts in the other semifinal matchup.
As far as Lucido is concerned, seeding and records don’t matter from here on out. She made it clear the team’s total focus is on winning the A-10 tournament, which would give the Spiders an automatic bid for the NCAA tournament.
Barry’s five goals tie a single-game Richmond field hockey record, but, for her, the best part of the day was securing a spot in the conference tournament.
“There were six of us today fighting for a chance to wear the Richmond jersey again,” Barry said after the game. “Today, we came ready, and I think our girls did a fantastic job.”
After the game, teammates, coaches and players’ families gathered around the field for presentation of gifts to the seniors on the team and headed over to a postgame tailgate in Tyler Haynes Commons.
Lucido said after the game she had never expected this group of seniors to come together so quickly and cohesively, adding that a class of six seniors being so unified in their leadership of a team was very rare.
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“It’s the very fact that they have persevered through adversity and all came together at the right time that is really significant,” she said about the senior class.
After playing two games in fewer than 24 hours, the team has until Friday before its next matchup in the conference semifinal against Saint Francis at 11 a.m. Should they win that game, the Spiders would advance to the A-10 championship the next day at 2 p.m.
Contact reporter Walter Abrams at firstname.lastname@example.org
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