Game Notes #3: Wolverines Play Host to Connecticut, Ball State

Sept. 8, 2009


Saturday, Sept. 12 -- vs. Connecticut (Phyllis Ocker Field), Noon
Live StatsConnecticut Website
Sunday, Sept. 13 -- vs. Ball State (Phyllis Ocker Field), 1 p.m.
Live StatsBall State Website

The No. 20-ranked University of Michigan field hockey team (1-3) returns home to Ann Arbor this weekend (Sept. 12-13) to open the home portion of its schedule. U-M hosts No. 5 Connecticut at Phyllis Ocker Field at noon on Saturday, Sept. 12. Michigan has an even 3-3 record against the Huskies all-time. UConn got the better of U-M last year, 4-3, in Storrs, Conn.

The Wolverines finish the home stand against Ball State on Sunday, Sept. 13. Game time is 1 p.m. Michigan holds a 12-5 edge over the Cardinals, including a 4-3 win in Muncie, Ind., during the 2008 season.


Name GP G A P
Meredith Way 4 2 0 4
Alicia Mayer 4 2 0 4
Bryn Bain 4 2 0 4
Paige Laytos 4 1 1 3
Zara Saydjari 4 1 1 3


Paige Pickett 4 1-3-0 2.25 .780

Spreading the Wealth
-- Michigan's five-goal output in the win vs. Temple on Sept. 4 was its best offensive output in 10 games, dating back to last season. Five different Wolverines scored in U-M's first win of the season. Meredith Way (Lititz, Pa./Warwick) and Alicia Mayer (Selinsgrove, Pa./Selinsgrove) picked up their second goals of the season, while Paige Laytos (Lititz, Pa./Warwick), Zara Saydjari (Skowhegan, Maine/Skowhegan Area) and Bryn Bain (Berlin, N.J./Eastern Regional) each notched their first goal of the season.

Bring the Bain -- Sophomore Bryn Bain scored against both Temple (Sept. 4) and Maryland (Sept. 6) to double her career goal total. Bain had Michigan's final goal in the 5-1 win over the Owls and prevented the shutout in the 4-1 loss to the Terrapins. Two of her four career goals are against Temple.

Gamer for Mayer -- Against Temple, junior Alicia Mayer scored for the second time in as many games. Her tally vs. the Owls also proved to be the game-winning goal, the second of her career. Her other gamer came against Ohio State on Oct. 5, 2008.

Pickett Fence -- Fifth-year senior goalkeeper Paige Pickett (Dallas, Texas/Episcopal School of Dallas) leads the Big Ten Conference in saves (32) and saves per game (8.0) through the first two weeks of play. Pickett had to make just one save in the win over Temple, but was peppered by the No. 1 Terrapins. She made 10 saves against Maryland for her third double-digit save performance of the young season.

Tri-captains -- In April, head coach Marcia Pankratz named a trio of captains in senior Kelly Fitzpatrick (Hummelstown, Pa./Palmyra Area), Jenner Johnson (Lake Bluff, Ill./Lake Forest) and redshirt junior Paige Laytos (Lititz, Pa./Warwick). It marks the sixth time in seven years that the team's leadership is spread amongst three individuals.

Introducing the Newcomers (Coaches Edition) -- The entirely overhauled Wolverine coaching staff has plenty of previous experience in Ann Arbor. Head coach Marcia Pankratz previously led the Maize and Blue for nine seasons from 1996-2004. She is the winningest coach in U-M field hockey history (147-55, .728 winning percentage). Pankratz led Michigan to the 2001 NCAA title and six NCAA Tournament berths in all.

Assistant coach Kristi Gannon Fisher was a two-time All-American as a back for Michigan from 2000-03. She earned All-Big Ten first team accolades all four years. She went on to become a member of the U.S. National Team from 2004-06. Fisher was a volunteer assistant for U-M during the 2006-07.
Assistant coach Ryan Langford is brand new to Ann Arbor. He has 10 years of previous assistant coaching experience at James Madison (2007-08), Temple (2005-07), Appalachian State (2000-05) and Southwest Missouri State (1999-2000). Langford spent seven years on the USA Field Hockey national team (1994-99, 2001-03).

Michigan field hockey is now on Twitter. Sign up and follow the Wolverines (Michigan_fhock) with up-to-the-minute news and information throughout the season and beyond. Twitter is a free casual, online social network that is designed to connect businesses, organizations and individuals. Each Twitter post (or "tweet") can be received on a user's cell phone via text or on the web.

Connecticut -- The Connecticut Huskies (4-0) are coming off a pair of wins last weekend. UConn beat Holy Cross, 4-1, at home on Sept. 3 and then toppled No. 11 Penn State on the road on Sept. 6. Loren Sherer (5-5-15) and Ali Blankmeyer (4-1-9) are the top Husky scorers. For information on Connecticut, visit

Ball State -- The Ball State Cardinals are 2-2 following two losses this past weekend. BSU lost in overtime, 5-4, to Fairfield on Sept. 4. The Cardinals then were beaten by Villanova, 4-1, on Sept. 5. Hannah Jones is the top point-getter for BSU with five goals and an assist for 11 points. Brooke MacGillivary has three goals. For information on Ball State, visit

The first regular season National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) poll was released on Sept. 8. Michigan was ranked No. 17 in the country, up from No. 19 in the preseason. Despite a 1-3 record, the Wolverines have played three teams currently ranked in the top five -- Maryland, Wake Forest and North Carolina. The next Kookaburra/NFHCA Division I National Coaches Poll will be released on Tuesday, Sept. 15, and the poll is available on the NFHCA's site.

Rank, Team (first-place votes)       Points
 1. Maryland       (23)               553
 2. North Carolina (5)                535
 3. Wake Forest                          449
4. Princeton 435 5. Connecticut 426 6. Virginia 423
7. Michigan State 369 8. Syracuse 351
9. Old Dominion 253 10. Boston College 239 11. Duke 220
12. James Madison 201 13. Penn State 169
14. Drexel 161 15. Massachusetts 153 16. Louisville 138 17. Iowa 121 18. Indiana 103 19. Ohio State 86 20. Michigan 75

Saturday, Sept. 19 -- vs. Syracuse (Louisville, Ky.), 3 p.m.
Sunday, Sept. 20 -- at Louisville (Louisville, Ky.), 1:30 p.m.