Field hockey has milestone weekend

The women's field hockey team made history on Friday by notching both the program's 100th and 101st victories at home against a couple of conference rivals, SUNY Oneonta and SUNY New Paltz.The Knights reached their milestone victory on Friday against the Oneonta Red Dragons with a decisive 3-0 win.

A pair of Knights also wrote their names into the record books that day: Seniors Michelle Milkovich and Stephanie Maisonet became Geneseo's all-time points leader and goal scorer, respectively. This "perfect storm" of achievements made for one of the most memorable days in the fairly new program's 13-year history."

There was a lot going into that game," said head coach Jessica Seren with a grin. "And at the end of the game to come out with everything, it was just impressive."The Knights stormed out with an early lead in their home opener with Milkovich's record-setting goal. I

t came unassisted at 11 minutes, 25 seconds and picked up the two points needed to surpass alumna Leslie Howlett who had previously set the record with 70 career points."It means a lot to [Milkovich] because she works hard and she's our playmaker on the field without a doubt," Seren said. "She's got that mentality that no one is going to stop her and she's just a great player to watch.

"Led by a stifling defense, Geneseo never looked back as Maisonet scored twice, the second of which earned her the scoring title with 30 total markers, again surpassing Howlett's record for that category.Even with all the fanfare surrounding Milkovich and Maisonet's individual accomplishments, it was the defense that earned the program its 100th victory.

The Knights limited their opponent to just two shots on goal, and sophomore Caitlyn Dowell made one save to earn the shutout. Seren attributes the defense's success to a new system that resembles more of a soccer formation than anything else.

"We're still adjusting to it," said Seren, who thinks that the new strategy has made a big difference in improving the team's defense.Instead of having three midfielders, three defenders and a single sweeper - a strategy the Knights used last year - the Knights now use a triangle formation in the midfield and keep four defenders back to help prevent penetration down the middle of the field.

"We're still working the kinks out of it. I don't think by any means we've perfected it yet," Seren said. "But it has worked very well; it plays to our strengths and the type of players we have on our team."Geneseo continued its stellar defense on Saturday against New Paltz as Dowell made one save in the Knights' second shutout victory of the weekend.

This time, senior Erin Zalewski led the scoring attack, netting two of the team's four goals. Freshman Katie Farley and sophomore Katie Gallo each had one goal and Milkovich added two more assists, bumping her name further atop the all-time list with 72 points."I was very happy for them and they were very excited about it," said Seren of her team's accomplishments this weekend. "They're a part of history and they deserve it."The Knights are now 4-1 overall and a perfect 2-0 in SUNYAC conference play as they look ahead to Morrisville next Saturday. Geneseo then has one of its biggest games of the year at SUNY Cortland on Friday, Oct. 1.

Eds. Note:

The field hockey team continued to play exceptionally well, defeating Utica College 3-1 on Wednesday afternoon. Familar faces Michelle Milkovich and Stephanie Maisonet both scored their fourth goals of the season and Katie Gallo added a goal and an assist to pace the Knights.Caitlyn Dowell got the win in goal, recording five saves as Geneseo improves to 5-1 on the season. With the victory, the Knights extend their winning streak to four games and travel to Morrisville on Saturday.