WORCESTER, Mass. – The Eastern Connecticut State University field hockey team hasn't seen much of the road this year – playing seven of its first nine contests at the Mansfield Outdoor Complex – but what little that it has seen, it has not liked.
Saturday, Eastern (4-6, 4-4 Little East) fell to 0-3 away from home this year following a 4-1 Little East Conference loss at Worcester State University at Coughlin Field. The Lancers were the conference coaches' pre-season pick for No. 1 after reaching the LEC semifinals a year ago.
Coming off a pair of encouraging LEC home victories over Plymouth State and Bridgewater State, the Warriors visited their personal House of Horrors Saturday, losing on Worcester's (7-5, 5-2 Little East) home field for the 11th straight time and for the 12th time in 13 attempts in the all-time series.
Eastern had split its last four matches with Worcester – winning by a goal twice in home victories in the last four seasons -- but was outshot 20-9 Saturday. The Warriors held their own in the first half – on the short end of a 9-6 shooting margin – but but trailed by two at the break. Michaila Parent, last year's LEC Offensive Player-of-the-Year, scored a back-breaking goal five minutes before the break with her 12th marker of the year that made it a two-goal Worcester lead.
By the time senior defender Stephanie Hogan (Northford) got the Warriors on the board with an unassisted goal -- coming with two minutes left -- Eastern trailed, 4-0. The goal was the fifth of the year for Hogan, who shares the team lead with junior Morgan Sanson (Thomaston).
First-year sophomore goalie Keira Integlia (Branford) made eight stops in the loss.
Eastern visits Fitchburg State University Saturday at 11 a.m. in a conference match. The Warriors have beaten the Falcons five of the last six times the programs have met. Fitchburg is 7-4, 4-2 in the LEC after blanking visiting UMass Dartmouth, 3-0, Saturday.