Teams: UC Davis at Northwestern; vs. Indiana; at Ball State
Records: Aggies, 3-5; Wildcats 8-4; Hoosiers 6-4; Cardinals 4-6
Where: Lakeside Field – Evanston, Ill.; BSU Turf Field – Municie, Ind.
When: Thursday at 1 p.m.; Saturday at 10 a.m.; Sunday at 8 a.m.
Who to watch: Sophomore forward Emily Mecke has been a key part of the Aggies’ offense this season.
The Carlsbad, Calif. native has scored twice and has three assists on the year.
Did you know? This is the second of three road trips this season that will take UC Davis away from the state of California.
On their most recent interstate road trip in Missouri the Aggies amassed three straight victories.
Preview: UC Davis will face a significant challenge on this trip.
The Aggies will have to play three games in four days, including a match against Ball State at 8 a.m. pacific time following a day of travel.
UC Davis expects the rough schedule to take a toll physically, but they know this trip will test more than just their bodies.
“It’s going to be the biggest mental challenge of the season for us,” said coach Vianney Campos. “It’s tough going on the road when you have to focus on class as well as field hockey. Our team will have to deal with a high level of fatigue and stress.”
The situation won’t be made any easier by the opponents UC Davis will face.
Both Northwestern and Indiana are known for having strong field hockey programs.
“We’re going to experience two traditional powerhouse teams with great coaches,” Campos said. “These teams have great strength, speed, and power. It will be great competition for us.”
No matter what squads they’ll play, however, Aggies are going to stick to their team principles.
“We’re going to play our game,” Campos said. “That means a strong passing flow, finding open teammates and getting behind the opponent’s defense. The last few games we let California and Stanford get us into a frantic style. We have to make sure that doesn’t happen again.”
UC Davis also knows that to be successful it has to keep focused on each individual match up.
“We’re keeping our mindset the same as it’s been all year,” Campos said. “We’re taking it one game at a time.”
– Trevor Cramer