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Battle of Ivy Unbeatens, Top-Five Matchup Next for No. 3 Field Hockey

Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications                                                                      Release: 09/26/2012
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Courtesy: Beverly Schaefer
Kelsey Byrne and the Tigers look to get back in the win column versus Columbia and No. 4 Maryland.
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No. 3 Princeton (7-1, 2-0 Ivy) at Columbia (6-2, 2-0 Ivy)
Game Info: Friday, Sept. 28 at 7 p.m.
Location: New York, N.Y.
All-Time Series Record: Princeton leads 15-0
Last Meeting: Oct. 1, 2011, Princeton won 3-2 (2OT)

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No. 3 Princeton (7-1, 2-0 Ivy) vs. No. 4 Maryland (7-1, 2-0 ACC)
Game Info: Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 4 p.m.
Location: Bedford Field, Princeton, N.J.
All-Time Series Record: 
Maryland leads 15-5
Last Meeting: Sept. 27, 2011, Maryland won 6-2

Live Stats Live Video ($) Game Notes @PUTIGERS @TigerFH

This Week for the Tigers: Following its first loss of the year, the No. 3 Princeton field hockey team looks to get back on track in New York City as the squad takes on Columbia (6-2, 2-0 Ivy) Friday, Sept. 28 at 7 p.m. The Tigers (7-1, 2-0 Ivy) then return home to host No. 4 Maryland (7-1, 2-0 ACC) on Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 4 p.m.

Last Time Out: The Tigers remained perfect in Ivy play behind an 8-0 shutout victory on the road at Yale on Sept. 22. The following afternoon, Princeton's seven-game winning streak was halted by a 2-0 loss to then-No. 2 Syracuse.

On Deck: The Maryland game opens up a five-game homestand, as American (Oct. 7), Brown (Oct. 13), Harvard (Oct. 20) and UConn (Oct. 21) follow suit to Bedford Field.

Follow the Tigers: Live video and stats will be available for all Princeton home games at GoPrincetonTigers.com. Live stats will also be available from Columbia Friday.

Get Connected: Are you following Princeton on Facebook and Twitter? Follow the athletics department at Facebook.com/PrincetonAthletics and Twitter.com/PUTIGERS. Connect with the Tiger Field Hockey team at Facebook.com/TigerFH or Twitter.com/TigerFH.

Scouting Columbia: After opening the year with a pair of losses, Columbia is riding a six-game winning streak into Friday's match.

The Lions (6-2, 2-0 Ivy) are led by Liz Malone's eight goals, as she is averaging a goal per game. Paige Simmons is the assist-leader with six.

Defensively, Christie O'Hara (6-2) is Columbia's primary keeper. She has 56 saves, a 1.94 goals against average and has allowed 15 goals against.

Tigers All-Time vs. Columbia: Princeton is undefeated all-time, 15-0, versus Columbia. The Tigers edged the Lions, 3-2, in double overtime in their last meeting on Oct. 1, 2011 in Princeton.

Scouting No. 4 Maryland: Maryland (7-1, 2-0 ACC) currently is riding a five-game winning streak. Prior to heading to Princeton, the Terps will visit Wake Forest (Sept. 28) and host Temple (Sept. 30).

Goalie Natalie Hunter has started all eight games and is 6-1, behind 20 saves, a 1.58 goals against average and 10 goals against.  Brooke Cabrera has played in four games, earning one victory.

The Maryland offense is led by Ali McEvoy (7 goals, 1 assist) and Jill Witmer (5 goals, 6 assists). Twelve players have recorded at least one goal on the year.

Tigers All-Time vs. Maryland: Maryland leads the all-time series 15-5 over the Tigers. In the last meeting on Sept. 27, 2011 in College Park, Md., the Terps dropped Princeton 6-2. The Tigers last win versus UM was in 2010 at home, 4-2.

Tabbed Third: Princeton remains ranked No. 3 in the nation this week, behind 822 votes. This is the first week the Tigers have not received any first place votes. Princeton still has nationally ranked Maryland, UConn and Virginia on the schedule.

Ranked Opponents: The Tigers have played five teams that are currently or were formally nationally ranked, going 4-1. Richmond was not ranked when they played at Bedford, but earned a place in the top-25 the following week.

Princeton's lone blemish came at the hands of the current No. 1 team in the country Syracuse, 2-0, last weekend.

Ivy Implications: Both Princeton and Columbia are the lone undefeated Ivy squads entering this weekend's game. First place will be on the line, as the Tigers look to remain undefeated in league play and earn their 22nd Ivy League title this year.

Offensive Trailblazers: Kathleen Sharkey still leads the nation in points (39) and goals per game (2.13), and is No. 24 in assists per game (0.63). Katie Reinprecht is No. 2 in the nation in assists per game (1.00) and No. 21 in points per game (2.00).

Julia Reinprecht is No. 17 in assists per game (0.71) and freshman Teresa Benvenuti is No. 46 in the same category (0.50), while goalie Christina Maida is No. 21 in goals against average (1.56).

Kirby, U.S. U21 National Team Win Bronze: Sophomore Sydney Kirby and the U.S. Field Hockey Junior National Team have qualified for the Junior World Cup following the squad's third place finish at the Pan American Junior Championship in Guadalajara, Mexico. Team USA defeated Chile, 2-1, en route to the bronze medal.

Kirby had two goals during the preliminary round, as the U.S. finished second in its pool play.

The Captains: Seniors Katie Reinprecht and Kathleen Sharkey and junior Julia Reinprecht will serve as field hockey's tri-captains in 2012.

Sharkey Tops All-Time Scoring Record: Kathleen Sharkey is now first all-time in career goals scored with 86 and career points with 199 in program history.

Classmate Katie Reinprecht is now No. 5 in career points with 135 and second in career assists with 39.

Welcome Back: This year Princeton returns 17 letterwinners, including the return four veterans who spent the last year playing with the U.S. Senior National Team in Michelle Cesan, Julia Reinprecht, Katie Reinprecht and Kathleen Sharkey. The Tigers also welcome six freshmen to the lineup this fall.

Beautiful Bedford: In 2012 the Tiger field hockey program will call the newly constructed Bedford Field home, a state-of-the-art turf facility. Bedford features an optimal playing surface in artificial turf and a built-in watering system. There are currently 1,200 seats, with room for additional temporary seating.

Return of National Team Quartet: After spending the past year-and-a-half training and playing with the U.S. Senior National Team, juniors Michelle Cesan and Julia Reinprecht, and seniors Katie Reinprecht and Kathleen Sharkey return to the pitch. During their time with Team USA, the squad won gold at the Pan Am Games.

Both Reinprecht sisters were then named to the 16-player London Summer Olympics roster, with the duo contributing significantly in their Olympic debut. Cesan was also named one of two alternates to the Games.

A Decade Under Holmes-Winn: Head coach Kristen Holmes-Winn is entering her 10th season at the helm of the Tiger field hockey program. During that span Princeton boasts a 110-56-0 overall record and .663 winning percentage. The Tigers have won eight Ivy League titles under Holmes-Winn's tutelage, including the last seven consecutive championships.

Joining Holmes-Winn on the sidelines for her 10th season is assistant coach Melisa Meccage, and both Nate Franks '07 and Mike Pallister are entering their second season working under Holmes-Winn.

Experienced Rookies: The six-player incoming freshman class boasts a talented group. Each member of the Class of 2016 has youth national team experience, including Teresa Benvenuti who was named to the U.S. Women's Development Squad this past spring.

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