Field Hockey vs Michigan, Simon (17)

Defender Anna Simon(17) keep the ball away from Michigan midfielder/back Guadalupe Fernandez Lacort (16) during the game against Michigan at the Penn State Field Hockey Complex on Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019. Penn State defeated Michigan 2-1.

Penn State’s defense brought it on Sunday and did not allow Delaware to score a single goal in the game.

The Nittany Lions went ahead and never looked back as they won 3-0 against the Blue Hens.

Head coach Char Morett-Curtiss was pleased with her team’s performance on the defensive end of the field.

“Just really proud of the defense, and Brie Barraco played an outstanding game,” Morett-Curtiss said.

The Nittany Lion defense carried its high energy throughout the entire game en route to its first shutout of the season.

Morett-Curtiss had this to say about what stood out to her in the game on the defensive side.

“I think just the defense being resilient and obviously not giving them great looks at the goal.”

Junior goalie Brie Barraco was very important for the blue and white in Sunday’s contest with six saves and zero goals conceded.

A diving save from Barraco in the second half gave Penn State the momentum it needed to stay ahead of Delaware.

“With Brie Barraco making that stick save, that makes a big difference, gives your team a boost,” Morett-Curtiss said, “You think like it's 2-0 and she makes this crazy, great save, where it could’ve gone to 2-1.”

The blue and white kept the pressure on and turned up the intensity into the second half of the game, and Morett-Curtis attributes this success to the team’s tirelessness.

“I think our fitness was good today,” Morett-Curtiss said. “We both played Friday, they had a tough game against Harvard, we obviously had a tough game against Albany, but I think that this team really has each other's back when they’re on the field, so I think they can just cover for each other.”

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Morett-Curtiss also said Penn State’s defense was able to maintain its energy because of the relentless pressure up front.

“I think we have like nine forwards that come in the game — they’re the work horses,” Morett-Curtiss said. “So if they can get pressure on the ball, get the ball down into some scoring situations it takes a lot of pressure and legs, it saves the legs of the middies and the defense.”

Senior defender Anna Simon scored her seventh goal of the season Sunday as she put one in off of a penalty corner, where she has seen a lot of success lately.

Simon credits her scoring from corners to her expectations and mentality that she approaches the shots with this season.

“I honestly think, obviously preparation and then just I took the pressure off myself,” Simon said. “Last season I definitely felt pressure having to score on corners, and this year I just came in and was like ‘You know what, if it happens it’s gonna happen it’s gonna be great, if not I’m just not gonna be as hard on myself,’ so I think that definitely helped.”

The Nittany Lions have extended their winning streak once again as they’ve taken their fifth straight victory to start the season.

“It’s great. Honestly this year anything can happen,” Simon said. “The Big Ten is so strong and all the other conferences too. We honestly take it game by game. We take every team so seriously and just play to the best of our abilities, and hopefully [we] keep getting better and better.”

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