Ziniu Chen | Contributing PhotographerField Hockey
McInerney helps pace Syracuse’s offense in win over Yale
Liz McInerney did not allow the pouring rain to be a factor.
McInerney scored one goal against the Bulldogs in Syracuse’s 5-0 win over Yale on Sunday. When she wasn’t scoring on her own, she was creating opportunities for her teammates, assisting on goals from Emma Russell and Gillian Pinder.
Shying away from the spotlight, McInerney insisted that it’s the coaching staff and the play of her teammates that deserve the attention.
“The game plan was better executed today, and when the forwards are moving for you it’s easy to get the assist,” McInerney said.
McInerney’s goal came at 14:54, the third of Syracuse’s five goals in the first half. It was her fourth goal of the season.
With her two assists, her total this season rose to a team-leading eight. In an offense primarily built around the passing efforts of the players, McInerney has the chance to shine and be a part of many of the Orange’s goals.
The team was unhappy with its defensive effort on Saturday in the Orange’s 3-0 win over Louisville, and McInerney said she wanted to redeem herself.
“Our press was better, the forward line through the midfield, so the defense had a lot less to do,” McInerney said. “Another shutout, so we can’t complain. Today was much better.”
With rain falling throughout the game, McInerney and the Syracuse defense made sure not to tire out.
“We did a lot less useless running today; the runs we made were sharper and shorter, so we were moving much better in this game,” McInerney said.
Defensive back Iona Holloway said she felt the midfielders played a well-rounded game and were everywhere they needed to be on defense, making it easier in the back of the field.
Although Holloway was pleased with the play of her teammates as a whole, she also joked about McInerney’s game.
“Liz did a great job today, she loves counting her points up so she’s going to be happy with that,” Holloway said.
Coach Ange Bradley was pleased not only with McInerney, but the team’s defense as a whole.
“I thought our defensive effort was very good, we cleaned up our pressing, and our forwards took care of what they needed to in the front half of the field, which then cleaned things up for us in the back half of the field,” Bradley said.
McInerney was a pesky defender throughout much of the game. Along with the other midfielders and backs, they tried desperately to keep the ball in the front. Ultimately it worked, allowing the Bulldogs to attempt only two shots the entire game.
Much of McInerney’s personality shows up on the field during games, and that’s something Bradley hopes will continue.
“Liz likes to have fun, she’s a free spirit, she’s determined, she’s an amazing passer and incredibly selfless,” Bradley said. “From that perspective she leads us through the midfield and she’s done just a great job for us.”
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