Hartford, Conn. - The Trinity College field hockey team, which finished the 2012 season with an 11-3 record and finished fourth in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) with a 7-3 league mark, has qualified for the league's championship tournament and will host the Amherst College Lord Jeffs on Saturday, October 27 at 1 p.m. Trinity, coached by Anne Parmenter (12th Season) will be making its eighth overall appearance and its fifth straight in the NESCAC Tournament, and is the No. 4 seed. No. 5-seeded Amherst finished the year 10-4 overall and 6-4 in the league, including a 1-0 loss against Trinity in Amherst on October 2. Each team has been to one NESCAC Finals, and Trinity won the only previous NESCAC Tournament game between the schools, 1-0, in the 2008 quarters. Trinity hosted the league tournament in 2009 as the top seed but lost in the finals, 3-2, against Tufts.
The winner of the NESCAC Championship Tournament will determine the league's automatic qualifier for the NCAA Division III Championship Tournament. Top-seeded Middlebury (14-0, 10-0) hosts No. 8-seeded Connecticut College (7-7, 4-6), No. 2-seeded Tufts (13-1, 9-1) hosts No. 7-seeded Wesleyan (7-7, 4-6) and No. 3-seeded Bowdoin (12-2, 8-2) hosts No. 6-seeded Williams (6-8, 4-6) in the other quarterfinal games Saturday.
Trinity ended the regular campaign on Wednesday night with a 2-1 triumph over Wesleyan. Bantam junior defender Sarah Duncan (Dedham, Mass.) and rookie forward Olivia Tapsall (Greenwich, Conn.) scored goals, while senior co-captain midfielder Haley Thompson (Ipswich, Mass.) and senior forward Hadley Duncan (Rye, N.Y.) provided assists, and junior goalkeeper Anne Marie Scalambrino (Chicago, Ill.) recorded four saves.
The Bantams are seeking their fifth straight trip to the NESCAC Final Four, after winning road games to reach the semifinals the last two autumns. All three of Trinity's losses this season came at the hands of this tournament's top three seeds with a 2-1 overtime setback against Tufts in September, a 4-0 loss to Middlebury in October, and a 3-2 at Bowdoin on Saturday. The Bantams are ranked No. 12 in the nation, while Amherst is ranked No. 14 nationally.
Hadley Duncan leads Trinity in scoring with 10 goals (T4th in NESCAC) and one assist for 21 points, while Thompson has six goals and a team-high eight assists (T6th in NESCAC) for 20 points, Tapsall adds seven goals and three assists for 17 points, and Sarah Duncan boasts five goals and seven assists for 17 points. The four have combined for all 11 of Trinity's game-winning goals this fall.
Scalambrino has allowed 17 goals in 1,002 minutes for a 1.19 GAA (5th in NESCAC, 20th in nation) to go with 33 saves and a .660 save percentage. Junior Lyndsey Shepard (South Hamilton, Mass.) has started every game on the back line, teaming with Sarah Duncan, and sophomore Courtney Wynne (Darien, Conn.) to hold opponents to less than 100 shots in 14 games. Juniors Julia Rivera (Bethesda, Md.) and Paula Shea (Longmeadow, Mass.) and sophomore Sophie Doering (Darien, Conn.) have been every-day starters in a solid Bantam midfield. Junior Paige Duke (Dedham, Mass.) adds three goals and two assists on the front line, and first-year Nikki Rivera (Rockaway, N.J.) is a speedy and versatile talent off the Trinity bench.
Amherst, coached by Carol Knerr (12th Season), closed the regular campaign with a three-game winning streak and its four losses came to each the top four seeds in this tournament including three in overtime. Katie McMahon has 11 goals and seven assists, and Madeline Tank adds 11 goals for the Lord Jeff offense, while Rachel Tannenbaum has 74 saves and a 1.09 GAA in the Amherst cage.