ORONO, Maine – The University of Maine field hockey offense was clicking on all cylinders on Tuesday afternoon with Danielle Aviani leading the charge, as the Black Bears defeated Dartmouth, 5-2 at the UMaine field hockey complex. The Black Bears reached .500 for the first time since the beginning of the season as the team improved to 6-6 overall and Dartmouth fell to 3-6.
Aviani entered the contest as the team leader in goals and chipped in two more as she now has nine in 2014. Meanwhile Zoe Berkey, Nicole Sevey and Annabelle Hamilton also notched markers.
Emma Cochran who has come into her own as the season has worn on improved to 4-2 overall as she made four saves on six shots on goal and allowed two goals in the win. Ellen Meyer got the start and dropped to 3-6 overall as she made three saves on eight shots on goal.
The Black Bear offense, despite the goal output, held a slight edge in shots, 12-11 and trailed in penalty corners as Dartmouth led that category, 7-1.
The Big Green drew first blood in the game as Janine Leger scored the first of her two goals in the sixth minute, as Ali Savage fed her a ball on the far right side of the cage and she beat a sprawling Cochran to make it 1-0.
Maine then went on a three-goal run that brought the squad into halftime with a 3-1 lead.
The run started with Aviani as she connected on a Hamilton centering pass to knot it up at 1-1 at the 9:21 mark.
Berkey chipped in next marker in the 19th minute as she blasted a shot past Meyer after Stewart poked the ball back to her to give Maine its first lead of the game.
Sevey capped the run at the 23:41 mark as she scored the goal after inserting on the squads lone penalty corner. After centering the pass, Becca Paradee stopped it and Hamilton fired to the left side to the cage and the Skowhegan, Maine native tipped it past Meyer.
Leger struck again in the second half as she notched her second of the game at 52:41 mark scoring off a penalty corner. Savage once again received an assist.
The Black Bears answered right back nearly four minutes later as Aviani tallied her second of the game as she scored of a scramble on the right sight of the net with Stewart recording her second assist of the game.
Hamilton capped the Black Bears scoring in the 58th minute as she drove down the far left side of the cage stopped, spun around and fired a shot that beat Meyers to make it 5-2.
The five goals ties the most that the Black Bears have scored this season, with the first time coming this past weekend as the squad upended Vermont, 5-1. In its last six games Maine has outscored its opponents 22-9.
The Black Bears continue their three game home stand on Friday when they welcome conference foe, Fairfield to the UMaine field hockey complex. The squad then plays Yale on Saturday to complete the weekend. The game times are slated for 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. respectively.