Only a week ago, the field hockey team was riding high after notching an Ivy win over Cornell. Now, the Elis are headed back to the drawing board.

Yale (2-7, 1-1 Ivy) suffered another disappointing non-conference loss, 5-1, to Holy Cross (8-3) at home yesterday. Although the Bulldogs were able to hold the Crusaders to a 2-1 lead after the first half, they were unable to find the net in the second, and fell to give Holy Cross its sixth straight win.

On a gray afternoon at Johnson Field, Crusaders junior forward Sara O’Coin, the team’s leader in points, led her team to victory with a hat trick. O’Coin put the visitors on the board ten minutes into play off of an assist from midfielder Laura Cohen. Cohen, along with forward Tara Welch, was a first team All-Patriot League selection last year.

Although the Bulldogs were able to hold Welch scoreless, they could not keep up with the Crusaders, who outshot Yale 26 to 10.

Forward Katie Cantore ’10 said the Elis knew going into yesterday’s game that Holy Cross was a team that would play to its fullest.

“Holy Cross is definitely a team that when given an opportunity will take advantage of it,” she said. “In the opportunities they were given, they capitalized on all of them. We didn’t do the same.”

Yale regained some of its momentum late in the first half when it got its first penalty corner at the 28:42 mark and then three more in the final seven minutes of the half. With less than two minutes to play, midfielder Harriet Thayer ’08 passed to midfielder Lindsay Collins ’07, who got by Holy Cross goalkeeper Erin Singleton to put the Bulldogs within one. But Singleton, who finished with five saves, denied the Elis any goals in the second half to help her team to the win.

Eight minutes into the second half, Holy Cross grabbed control of the game with a goal from Carolyn O’Connelly. O’Coin added her third 55 minutes in, and Crusader midfielder Eli Skovron tallied another with 17 seconds to play. Bulldogs goalkeeper Elizabeth Friedlander ’07 played the full 70 minutes and finished with 14 saves.

Friedlander said the Elis were hurt by being outhustled and not playing as a unit.

“We got beat to the ball a lot,” she said. “We got outworked on the field [yesterday], not in terms of actual work, but we didn’t work smart. And we didn’t work together.”

The loss comes after the Elis were defeated by Sacred Heart, 3-2, on Wednesday night, which in turn followed the Bulldogs’ first Ivy win this season against Cornell last weekend. After playing seven of their first nine games against non-league competition, Yale’s next game against Dartmouth this Saturday will begin a four-game road stretch. It also marks the first of five games out of seven against Ivy rivals that will round out Yale’s season.

“We realize that our Ivy games are what are most important, and that’s where our main goals for this season are. Even though we’ve had some disappointing losses, we’ve realized these will help us when it really counts,” Cantore said.

While this week’s losses are disappointing, the team realizes that they are, fortunately, non-conference ones, and that team’s ultimate goal is still within reach.

“We’re 1-1 in Ivy games, so we still have a shot at the Ivies,” Friedlander said. “We’re trying to focus on that.”