The momentum keeps building for the field hockey team.

Coming off a 3-2 victory in double overtime over Dartmouth on Saturday, the Elis (6-5, 2-1 Ivy) picked up where they left off by defeating Bucknell (7-3) by a score of 3-1 at Johnson Field Sunday.

The level of intensity was set early by both team’s offenses. All goals were scored in the first half.

Yale head coach Ainslee Lamb was proud that her team established the game’s tone from the opening whistle.

“Certainly one of our goals [on Sunday] was to establish our game in the first five minutes,” Lamb said. “We wanted to dominate for 70 minutes of play, and while we did have lapses towards that goal, the bottom line is that we found a way to win.”

The Bulldogs struck the first blow seven minutes into the game on a goal by sweeper Meredith Hudson ’05 goal to take a 1-0 lead. With 15:58 remaining in the first half, midfielder Jana Halfon ’04 followed with an unassisted goal, and captain Francesca Gardner ’04 scored Yale’s final goal two minutes later.

The Yale defense, led by goalkeeper Spike Nesburg ’04, allowed Bucknell’s only goal with eight minutes remaining in the half. On what turned out to be a cold and rainy morning, the Eli backfield stepped up in the second half and held the Bisons scoreless for the remainder of the game.

The Bulldogs continued to turn around their season after a disappointing 1-4 start. Gardner said that the team did not lose its composure at any point this season.

“We take things one game at a time,” Gardner said. “Being 1-4 did not loom over us. While we are thrilled to be beyond that point, we never saw our start as being indicative of the entire season to come.”

Sunday’s decision was Yale’s third consecutive win. The Bulldogs’ last three victories have come against Quinnipiac, Dartmouth, and Bucknell — a streak which has improved their record to 6-5.

The Eli women said they feel confident carrying the momentum into this weekend’s game against the Cantabs.

“The three-game win streak helps build our confidence, but our preparation over the next week will be extremely important for the Harvard game,” Gardner said. “We have hard work to do to improve and put ourselves in a good position to beat them. We’re proud of the wins we’ve had recently, but now we have to focus entirely on Harvard.”

By defeating Bucknell, Yale moved above the .500 mark for the first time this season. With five games remaining, the Bulldogs hope to continue their winning ways through the final stretch.

Yale will play Harvard this Saturday at Johnson Field.

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