After cruising to a convincing 5–0 win over Sacred Heart in its season opener Friday night, the Yale women’s field hockey team earned a hard-fought 4–3 victory over local rival Quinnipiac to cap off the weekend Sunday afternoon at Johnson Field.

“We are definitely happy that we started out 2–0, but we could have played better hockey,” captain Katie Bolling ’11 said. “[Sunday] was an aggressive game, but we need to make games ours and not let our opponents control the tone.”

Forward Erica Borgos ’14 set the tone for the Bulldogs on Friday night, scoring two goals in her Yale debut. Junior Taylor Sankovich ’12 added two goals of her own to the Bulldog effort. Bolling posted an opening-day shutout as Yale started out its 2010 season by blanking Sacred Heart.

Sunday’s contest against Quinnipiac proved much more trying for Yale, though Borgos got things started once again, putting the Bulldogs up 1–0 with a goal off of a feed from forward Mary Beth Barham ’13.

That goal was the game’s only scoring until just under 20 minutes remained, when Johna Paolino ’11 converted a feed from Mia Rosati ’12 to double the Bulldogs’ lead.

Just over a minute later, Quinnipiac responded with a penalty corner goal to cut its deficit in half. Tensions mounted between the teams in the minutes that followed, and with just under 10 minutes left, Maddy Sharp ’13 netted a goal off a pass from midfielder Dinah Landshut ’12 to re-establish the Yale lead at two. Another penalty corner goal sliced the Bulldogs’ lead to one yet again, but Barham responded, finding not only the back of the net but also controversy, as a post-whistle tussle saw the sophomore come out of the game after ending up on the ground following her goal.

“We knew it was going to be a physical game, but we tried not to let them rattle us.” Barham said. “In the end, we persevered through some really tough play and were able to put the ball in the back of the net.”

Amanda Danzinger made good on an effective ball just a minute after Barham’s goal, winning the one-on-one battle with Bolling to pull the Bobcats within one. But after the dust settled, defensive play from backs Erin Carter ’12, Erica Cullum ’11 and Marissa Waldemore ’11 held off the Bobcat attack as the Bulldogs clung to the one-goal lead and eventually earned the win.

“We stayed very composed,” Landshut said. “It was important to us to keep playing good and strong Yale field hockey and not to get distracted … It was upsetting that they kept coming back, but we kept the game under control and continued generating scoring opportunities.”

The Bulldogs will need to continue to maintain control of their games next weekend as they face off against Colgate (1–4) and UMass (1–3). Both games are afternoon meetings at Johnson Field.