Getting off to a fast start, gathering ground balls and efficiently moving the ball were among the Greenwich High School girls lacrosse team’s objectives entering Thursday’s game against Brien McMahon and the Cardinals certainly excelled in each area.
Crisply passing the ball throughout, the Cardinals scored 10 goals the first 15 minutes of action, tallied 15 times in the opening half and received scoring from 12 players.
All of that added up to another decisive win for Greenwich, which coasted to a 20-5 triumph against McMahon at Cardinal Stadium. Senior midfielder Grace Collier recorded a team-high four goals with three assists to pace the Cardinals, who upped their record to 3-1.
“We didn’t overlook McMahon and we wanted to keep building with this game,” said Collier, one of the Cardinals’ senior captains. “We noticed in these past couple of games we had we came out slow and we wanted to work on coming out with fire under our feet and hustle and heart and we all did a great job of that today.”
Freshman attack Emma Abbazia continued her strong start to her first season on the squad, registering three goals and one assist for the victors. Senior attack Delaney Roth, one of the Cards’ captains, tallied twice, as did her sister, Sophie, a sophomore. Junior midfielder Noey Johnson also kept her standout play going, notching two goals and one assist in the winning effort.
“Today showed the team chemistry,” Johnson said. “We are one of the only teams that has not played each other for years and I think the chemistry that we have been working on building, showed today. We’re still improving on being a unit as one, especially on defense, we’re working on being one big unit. Offensively, we have really good shooters, but we’re working on our plays and our strategies that we do with other teams.”
McMahon, which scored the game’s first goal, received two tallies from senior attack Meghan Sisk and one goal apiece from senior Margaret Sovak, freshman Julia Bella and sophomore Lindsay Root.
“McMahon came out and had a good start and they had a strong draw,” Greenwich coach Tara Clough said. “We made some adjustments. We were out for two weeks (the team was in quarantine) and we are trying to play competitive games, while catching-up and implementing our strategy. We’re doing that every minute that we have in practice.”
Also powering the attack for the Cardinals was Kaylie Kitselman, who recorded a hat trick.
“I think we have started to definitely jell,” Kitselman said. “We have a lot of great midfielders, so we have a lot of threats from the top. We want to focus on keeping the energy up the entire game.”
After the Senators took a 1-0 lead, the Cardinals scored the game’s next six goals. Collier scored off the draw, putting GHS on top for good at 2-1 with 23:06 remaining in the first half. Kitselman tallied off an Abbazia pass at the 21:21 mark and Johnson tallied in transition, making it 3-1 with 17:52 left in the first half.
Collier converted a free position shot, the sophomore attack Cece Tauber tallied, putting the home team on top, 5-1. Later in the half, after Sisk scored on a low shot for McMahon, the Cards scored nine straight goals to take a 15-2 lead into halftime. Kitselman, Collier, Delaney Roth and Johnson sparked Greenwich’s offensive surge in the first half.
“The last couple of practices we have learned what each other’s strengths are and we’ve utilized that well today,” Collier said.
Sophomore defender MK Savio had a goal, as did junior midfielder Annabel Koven for the Cardinals, who received two saves from sophomore goalie Daryl Furno.
“It was a great game, it was nice to have a lot of players get the opportunity to get out there and compete at a high level,” Clough said. “We had contributions from a lot of players and it was a total team effort.”
Senior Marielle Povinelli and sophomore Keira Young had one assist apiece for Greenwich, which hosts Ridgefield Saturday at 12 p.m. in what should be a competitive matchup.
“We have not been overlooking any opponent this week, but we’ve really been looking forward to this game,” Collier said. “We don’t want to lose at home and we’re just going to come out hard and hopefully come out victorious.”
Added Kitselman: “I’m really excited for it, they’re a great threat and we’re really excited to play them.”
Categories: Greenwich High, Spring sports
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