Iowa field hockey finishes West Coast trip 2-1


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The Iowa field-hockey team rounded out the final leg of its California road trip in Stockton with a 5-1 win over the Pacific Tigers.

The win moves the Hawks, who took two of three on the West Coast, to 4-2 on the season.

The Black and Gold struck first with an early goal from forward Dani Hemeon.

But despite the early advantage for the Hawks, the Tigers controlled much of the play in the first period, forcing Iowa to defend a trio of penalty corners in the first 20 minutes of play.

While the rest of the first period played out in a similar fashion, Iowa was able to capitalize when it mattered, adding goals from Natalie Cafone and a second from Hemeon to go up 3-0 after 35 minutes.

The Hawks were hungry for redemption after a heartbreaking 2-1 overtime loss on Sept. 12 to No. 8 Stanford, and they took advantage of the situation on Sunday.

“We are disappointed with the result as we played a very hard-fought match,” interim head coach Lisa Cellucci said in a release after the Stanford loss. “We executed the game plan that we had in place and put ourselves in a position to win the game as we went up 1-0 with 14 minutes left.”

In the Pacific game the Black and Gold took control in the second half, steering 15 shots toward the Pacific net, including 11 on goal.  A second goal from Cafone and an insurance goal from Stephanie Norlander boosted the Hawks to a 5-1 lead and put the game out of reach for Pacific.

Goaltender Alex Pecora was stellar, tuning away 4 of 5 shots on goal, and she faced more than a half-dozen corner shots.  A second-period goal by Pacific ’s Nicole Laskosky was Pecora’s only blemish on the afternoon.

Pecora has started every game for Iowa so far this season.

The Hawkeyes will return to action on Sept. 21, opening Big Ten play on the road against Rutgers.

Follow @ryanarod on Twitter for news, updates, and analysis about the Iowa field-hockey team.

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