WILMINGTON Padua Academy used quick passes in its nonconference field hockey battle against Delaware Military Academy to dominate possession for long stretches of time.
That possession enabled the fourth-ranked Pandas to create chance after chance, and Abagail Boudart was often in the right spot, netting a hat trick in Padua’s 5-0 home victory Wednesday at Forbes Field.
“We moved the ball pretty well. We’ve been working on it pretty hard in practice, so we know to cut to the ball and move together,” Boudart, a senior, said.
The Pandas (3-0) won possession a few seconds after the opening whistle and quickly attacked the defense of the Seahawks (3-3), and whenever it would lose possession, Padua pressured whoever had the ball, creating turnovers and keeping the ball on its attacking half.
Boudart put the Pandas on the board in the tenth minute when she battled through traffic, putting Ashlee Brentlinger’s pass into the cage, and Boudart scored her second goal of the game 13 minutes later off of a cross feed from Jill Sherman.
The score remained 2-0 in Padua’s favor until the nine-minute mark of the second half when Boudart capped off her hat trick, guiding the ball into the cage after it came through a scrum, and Panda head coach Jayne Hughes says Boudart’s scoring touch is a result of her having a knack of being in the correct position.
“She was constantly at the right spot at the right time, taking rebounds off the goalie’s pad and shooting it as much as possible,” Hughes said.
Maia Lee increased Padua’s lead to four goals under two minutes later when her long-range shot crossed the goal line, and Sherman capped the scoring with 17 minutes remaining on a penalty corner.
The win continues the Pandas’ strong play to start the season, where they have outscored opponents 14-0 in its first three games, into their Turf Bowl showdown with rival Ursuline on Saturday at the University of Delaware’s Rullo Stadium.
“We have a pretty big game Saturday against Ursuline, so I’m hoping that we take the momentum into that game,” Hughes said. “I know we’re not going to possess the ball most of the time like today because of the Catholic rivalry thing. We’re going to work on defense a bit to make sure it’s solid.”
The Pandas outshot Delaware Military Academy 14-1 with Seahawks goalkeeper Jillian Segner making nine saves.