PROVIDENCE, R.I. – A powerful Providence offense handed the Brown field hockey team a 5-1 defeat in non-league action at Lennon Family Field on Wednesday. The Bears fall to 3-5 overall while the Friars improve to 4-5 on the season.
Providence was led by Daniella Bernasconi, who delivered a hat trick that included nearly-instant back-to-back goals to put the Friars up early.
The Friars struck almost immediately as Bernasconi knocked in goals within the first two minutes. Bernasconi grabbed a pass from Adrienne Houle in full stride and scooped in a goal from the right side just 27 seconds after the opening whistle, and later charged at the cage head on and drove the ball in to put the hosts up 2-0.
Stearns cut the deficit in half in the 24th minutes when she gathered a loose ball at the penalty stroke line and fired a bullet past Providence goalie Deidra Clymer. The Friars quickly made up the difference, however, as Caitlin Malone and Sally Adua each buried a goal in a span of 75 seconds to make it a 4-1 Friars lead. A scramble in front of the goal resulted in a Malone shot that deflected in off a defender's stick, and shortly after another ricochet from the right post found its way into the cage for Adua's tally.
O'Donnell managed a quick shot with just under a minute to play that was saved but earned the Bears a penalty corner. Alexis Miller drove a shot into the upper right hand corner only to have it ruled too high, leaving Brown facing a 4-1 disadvantage at the half.
Providence maintained offensive pressure in the second half and earned four penalty corners before Bernasconi chipped in her third goal to put the Friars up 5-1. Twelve second-half penalty corners wore down the Bears, who were unable to develop momentum and eventually fell by the four-goal margin.
Brown returns to action on Saturday with an Ivy League contest at Harvard at 12 p.m.