TOWSON, Md. -- A hat trick from Justine Ruhlin (Cornish, Maine/Sacopee Valley) highlighted an offensive outburst for the Goucher field hockey team tonight, leading the Gophers to a 4-0 victory over Notre Dame (Md.). With the three goals, Ruhlin now has 10 this season, becoming the first Goucher player since Saburah Posner in 2001 to score 10 or more goals in a season.
Goucher (4-12) outshot the Gators (0-12) by a 36-6 margin for the match, and the Gophers also had a 20-3 advantage in penalty corners.
Ruhlin got things started 1:18 into the match, taking a pass from Lizzie Barminski (Ventura, Calif./Buena) and blasting a low shot into the near corner to give Goucher the lead. Barminski picked up her team-leading sixth assist on the play.
Five minutes later, Barminski added a goal of her own, drilling a backhand shot from the top of the circle past goalie Danielle Neumeister for her fifth goal of the season. Goucher led 20-1 in shots heading into the intermission, though only four of those ended up on goal.
The Gophers continued their pressure in the second half, and Ruhlin scored her second goal of the match on a breakaway at 39:52. Tonight marked the third time this season that she has scored multiple goals in a match. Ruhlin's third goal came on a scramble off a penalty corner with a minute and a half to go, as she took a pass from Emily Gill (White Hall, Md./North Harford) and stuffed the ball past Neumeister. Gill registered her first assist of the year.
Ruhlin led the team with nine shots for the match. She was closely followed by Barminski with eight shots and Caroline Less (Easton, Mass./Oliver Ames) with a season-high six. Gill and Liz Weiner (New Bloomfield, Pa./West Perry) also set new season-highs with four shots apiece.
Demie Huffman (Granville, Ohio/Granville) earned her fourth win of the season despite not having to make a save in the first half. She was relieved after halftime by Taylor Striar (Laurel Hollow, N.Y./Cold Spring Harbor), who made two strong saves in the final three minutes to keep the shutout intact.
With the win, Goucher has now won eight in a row over the Gators dating back to 2003.
The Gophers conclude their season at 1 p.m. Saturday with a home matchup against Moravian (8-8). Weiner, the team's lone senior, will be honored prior to start of the match.