Bente van Vlijmen helped key Harvard's season opening 4-1 win at New Hampshire.
DURHAM, N.H. – Two goals from junior midfielder Bente van Vlijmen helped No. 15 Harvard field hockey (1-0) earn a season opening 4-1 win at New Hampshire (1-2). Sophomore Tessel Huibregtsen (goal, assist) and senior captain Kathleen Young added first half goals for the Crimson, which outshot the Wildcats 14-6 for the game, with a 4-2 edge on penalty corners.
Harvard took an early lead off a free hit from its own end, as a long pass found the stick of Huibregtsen, who ran in alone on the UNH goalkeeper and scored on a low shot to the opposite corner at 9:32.
The Crimson made it 2-0 on another great passing play as Maddie Earle flipped a short feed from the end line to Kathleen Young, who scored from in close to put Harvard ahead by two goals at 16:41.
Then, with 10:52 to play in the half, reigning All-American Bente van Vlijmen scored on Harvard's first penalty corner of the game with a well-placed shot from straightaway.
With under a minute to play, UNH got one goal back on its own penalty corner to cut the Harvard lead to 3-1 at the end of the opening 35 minutes.
The Crimson answered in the opening minutes of the second half with Huibregtsen setting up van Vlijmen after a beautiful run from the right side, followed by an off-balance finish just 5:39 into the second half.
- Bente van Vlijmen recorded her fifth multi-goal effort of her career.
- Tessel Huibregtsen notched her first career three-point game (goal, assist).
- Senior goalkeeper Libby Manela keyed a strong defensive effort with four saves on the night.
- Harvard won its season opening game for the third straight season.
- The Crimson earned its second straight win in the series against New Hampshire after snapping an eight-game skid in the series last year.
Harvard will take on Holy Cross (0-1) in its first game of the year at Berylson Field on Sunday at 1 p.m.. The game will air on ESPN+.