Varsity Field Hockey
vs Hotchkiss School
Score/Result: 0-3 L
Saturday, November 10, 2012
The score does not reflect how good of a game this was -- it was much closer than the score reflects. We knew the best chance Hotchkiss would have at scoring would be off corners so we made it our goal to keep them out of the circle and if they did get a corner to defend it well. At the very outset of the game, their right wing carried the ball down the side and was driving along the end line. Sarah Lindenberg was not taking the bait to tackle her and instead channeled her right into Maggie O’Neil who executed a perfect double team with a block tackle that stripped the Hotchkiss attacker of the ball. A few minutes later the wing was trying the same thing and Audrey held her ground so well she forced her to carry the ball over the end line.
However, it was inevitable that Hotchkiss would get a corner and with less than 20 minutes left in the first half they scored off a corner. Amy Feda made an initial great save, but was on the ground when the Hotchkiss attacker picked up the ball and lifted it over Amy. Their second goal came with 7:00 minutes left in the first half and we made the mistake of not playing the ball because we thought Hotchkiss had fouled and expected a whistle that did not come. We know we need to play to the whistle. Right as time was expiring in the first half Hotchkiss earned a corner. The rule is the corner plays out even if the clock runs out. Again Amy Feda made the initial save, but the ball was rebounded high and the Hotchkiss attacker was there and batted the loose ball in.
At half time we were clearly frustrated. We knew we had played well, but we also knew we had more to give. We made some personnel changes that matched us up better against their defenders and right from the first whistle of the second half it was a different game. We clearly made them nervous as we were beating them in one vs. ones and passing the ball extremely well. We had 6 corners in the second half, so we had our chances. In fact, Hotchkiss only had 3 more corners than we did, but clearly they were able to execute theirs better today and that was the main difference. However, we did keep them scoreless in the second half which was a little victory for us.
We played as a team today and everyone worked very hard. Our forwards had a hard time always connecting, but when they did it was beautiful field hockey. Mary DuBois and Collins Grant completely switched sides of the field and they didn’t think twice about, but instead really made things begin to happen for us in the second half. Lauren Drakeley was all over every ball in the midfield and had she been able to connect on the ball in the circle better it would have gone in. It was Audrey Quirk’s birthday today, but she gave the team a present by playing an absolutely amazing game. She was really strong on defense, especially on corners, and she also dominated in our attacking corners not to mention she was fully able to control the midfield. Along with Caroline Queally, who also was all over the ball and field today, dominating the midfield and making things happen on offense and defense. Our team took a number of knocks today and Maggie O’Neil always seems to have a target on her. But just like the song in our warm-up, she gets knocked down, but gets back up again. And of course played incredible defense the entire game. Rachael Alberti also took some serious knocks. She had the ball on a breakaway with 2:30 left on the clock. She wound up to take a shot and the Hotchkiss defender rushed down and collided with Rachael. The Hotchkiss player was sent off with a yellow card, which enabled us to play a man up. We earned a corner but didn’t score.
In the back for us were Gwen McGee, Sarah Lindenberg, Coco Tautkus and Issy Tabah who went in for the injured Maggie and made some awesome tackles to keep Hotchkiss out of the circle. Gwen, Saran and Coco were consistent, unflappable and strong on their sticks.
The best part of the game, however, was what happened on the sidelines. One of our awesome managers, Locke McGee was on the phone. I was just about to yell at him when I heard him yell into the phone, “Get over to the turf, we need you, we are losing but we can pull it out with your support!” He had called all his buddies over at another game and got them to come give us a needed boost in the second half. That is dedication.
It was a disappointing way to end our regular season, but we are all so proud because we played a great game of Taft field hockey and we are ready to continue our amazing season with a successful New England tournament. I’ll have the rankings tomorrow afternoon. Go Big Red!!!