Bears Host UC Davis In 2021 Spring Home Opener
BERKELEY - Revenge will be on the agenda under the lights at Underhill Field when the California field hockey team looks to get even with UC Davis after the Aggies defeated the Golden Bears in last Sunday's season opener. Cal and UC Davis meet for the second straight week, this time in Berkeley, for Cal's home opener on Friday, March 12, at 6 p.m. Although these squads are America East foes, this match will be a non-conference contest.
Due to public health guidelines, fans are not allowed to attend home events at Cal this semester.
The Golden Bears begin the 2021 spring campaign with a home-and-home series with UC Davis before heading east next weekend to begin conference play. The America East has combined the two divisions into one for the 2021 spring season. After Friday's rematch with the Aggies, the only remaining non-conference game on the schedule is a home match vs. Stanford on April 6 at Underhill Field.
Bears Fall To Aggies
UC Davis emerged victorious over Cal in the 2021 spring season opener last Sunday in Davis by the score of 2-1. Rachel Buttinger redirected a shot from Maddie Cleat mid-way through the third quarter for the lone Cal goal. Buttinger's tally evened the game at one after the Aggies scored early in the second half. UC Davis earned the game winner in the final seconds of the third quarter.
Jane Onners and Yvie Lock each contributed a defensive save against the Aggies last Sunday, both in the third quarter. Two key members of Cal's backfield, Onners, who also garnered a shot on goal, returns in 2021 after being named to the America East All-Rookie Team in 2019. Lock started every game last season and is a leader in the backfield.
Bears All-Time Vs. UC Davis
Cal is 25-7-1 all-time vs. UC Davis, and the Bears had won five in a row before the Aggies beat Cal in the 2019 regular season finale and last Sunday. The Bears won the 2019 meeting in Berkeley, 3-2, in overtime when Megan Rodgers scored to end it. Megan Connors scored and also garnered a critical defensive save late in the fourth quarter to help send the game into overtime.
The Bears have won their last two home openers. In the 2019 home opener, Cal defeated Quinnipiac, 5-1, at Underhill Field. Maddie Cleat scored twice and Megan Connors scored her first goal in her collegiate debut. In 2018, the Bears topped Providence, 5-1. Brynn Zorilla posted an assist in that victory.
A total of seven true freshmen made their collegiate debuts at UC Davis last Sunday, and four earned the start. Kiki de Bruijne, Sara Stone, Claire Hind and Kaiden Stanley started, while Natalie Moore, Abbey Frame and Sabine Hommes entered the game later. De Bruijne was the only Bear to get on the stat sheet, recording two shots, one on goal.
A program-record group of 17 Cal field hockey student-athletes honored with 2019 Zag Field Hockey/NFHCA Division I National Academic Squad laurels. In addition, Cato Knipping was recognized as Zag Field Hockey/NFHCA Division I Scholars of Distinction, and the Bears were once again recipients of Zag Field Hockey/National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division I National Academic Team honors.
America East Preseason Poll
America East coaches predict a sixth-place overall finish and second among west teams for Cal in the America East preseason poll. The Golden Bears earned 29 votes. Monmouth was predicted to win the league with 60 votes and five first-place votes. Stanford led the three west coast schools with 46 votes and one first-place vote.
Cal treks east for the first time this season for three contests. The Bears will face Maine on Saturday, March 20, at 11:30 a.m. PT., UMass-Lowell on Sunday, March 21, and Monmouth on Wednesday, March 24, at 10 am PT.