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Syracuse Field Hockey Throttles Ball State, Remains Unbeaten

The Syracuse field hockey team blew out Ball State on Sunday and improved to 6-0 in 2014.

Jack Marion

A day after needing two second-half goals to narrowly defeat Albany, the Syracuse field hockey team returned to its normal self on Sunday, taking down the visiting Ball State Cardinals 5-0.

The Orange, who improved to 6-0 with the win, have now won four times this season by at least four goals and have outscored their six opponents 28-5.

Forward Kati Nearhouse, a transfer from Old Dominion and a preseason All-ACC member, didn't wait long to make her presence felt after sitting out the team's first five games per NCAA transfer rules. She opened the game's scoring 18 minutes into the first half when she found the back of the net on a putback goal.

Nearhouse would add her second goal with just over five minutes remaining in the game, giving Syracuse the 5-0 lead that became the final score.

Sandwiched between Nearhouse's scores were two goals from forward Lauren Brooks (her sixth and seventh goals of the season) and one from midfielder Lieke Visser, who also assisted on both of Syracuse's goals in the 2-1 win over Albany on Saturday.

Jess Jecko, the junior goalie, saved three shots and recorded her first shutout of the season. She had four shutouts in 2013.

Next up for the Orange: a Friday night date in Chapel Hill, where Syracuse will face North Carolina. UNC is ranked second in the nation by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association and was selected by coaches to finish first in the ACC this season.

At least until then, Syracuse can lavish in the fact that it is one of only four ACC teams (the others being UNC, Duke, and Louisville) still unbeaten after the first two weeks of the regular season.