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|Rain doesn't stop field hockey parade|
|Written by Wendy Genereux|
|Thursday, 31 October 2013 11:46|
Not even a cold and rainy afternoon could slow down the Duxbury field hockey team when they played host to Falmouth last Wednesday afternoon. With every team gunning for the top-ranked Lady Dragons, Falmouth brought its “A” game and kept Duxbury at bay in the first half.
However, as has been the case all season, once the Green Machine gets going on offense it is almost impossible to stop them. While taking a1-0 lead into the half, Duxbury scored five unanswered goals in the second half for a 6-0 victory.
Prior to the non-league match-up with Falmouth, Duxbury settled the score with Sandwich earlier in the week. The Lady Dragons have been nothing short of perfect this season, but the one blemish on their record was a 1-1 tie to the Blue Knights in the second game of the season.
Playing on its home turf this time, Duxbury's speed was on display throughout the game in the 4-0 win. The victory left no doubt that the Lady Dragons are on top of their game heading into the postseason, and that was evident when they captured their 15th consecutive win against Falmouth.
Duxbury started with the ball, and junior midfielder Catherine Cronin avoided a couple of Falmouth defenders before getting the ball up to senior captain Katie Smith, who released a shot on net that went wide left.
Shortly thereafter, Duxbury went on the attack again with junior midfielder Meredith Wright displaying her fine stick skills by quickly getting the ball to senior captain Ally Hammel, who along with Smith, drew Duxbury's first penalty corner. However, the Lady Dragons could not take advantage of the corner or a subsequent free hit in the attacking zone.
With Falmouth playing well on defense, Duxbury controlled the ball at midfield with excellent passing by Hammel, Cronin, Madison Vuilleumier, and senior captain Zoe Griffin, who sent a pass up to leading scorer Katie Smith. Smith juked her way by two defenders and got a shot on Falmouth netminder Mary Negri, who made the initial save. Howev- er, Cronin kept the play alive by feeding Smith, who sent a ringing shot past Negri for a goal, and a 1-0 advantage.
The Duxbury goal seemed to wake up the Lady Clippers, who had a scoring bid of their own at the other end. But junior goalkeeper Maggie Connelly came out of the net to make the kick save. However, the ball went right back out to a Falmouth forward, who took the shot on the now empty net. That's when Duxbury defensive standout Haley Johnson made the play of the game, stopping the shot that would have tied the game.
Duxbury had a great opportunity to add to its lead when Hammel started a fast break by sending a rocket of a pass up to a waiting Katie Smith, who sent a perfect pass across the center of the circle to sister, Lily, for a shot on net. Negri made the kick save to keep it a one goal lead at the half.
Understanding that the Lady Clippers were trying to control the pace of the game, senior captain Zoe Griffin rallied the troops at halftime. It paid off with two goals in a 30-second span at the start of the second half.
Senior captain Lily Smith (2 goals/1 assist) handled a pretty pass from Vuilleumier that rattled the back of the net, giving Duxbury a 2-0 lead. Moments later it was Smith again, as she maneuvered her way down the field and past three Falmouth defenders with only the goaltender to beat. The Yale-bound senior did not miss, and the Lady Dragons never looked back.
Also scoring for Duxbury was Katie Smith, who finished the game with another hat trick and added an assist on junior Charlotte Wahle's goal. Smith also tied Hannah Murphy's single-season scoring record with 28 goals. Wright and Hammel finished with one assist, and Vuilleumier had another solid game with two assists. Junior Jane Dudley, sophomore Nicole Quinlan and senior Cari Librett all played well in the second half.
After beating Mansfield 6-1 on Saturday, the undefeated Lady Dragons will prepare for the MIAA tournament.