Fall sports

Sacred Heart Greenwich advances to title game of NEPSAC Field Hockey Championships by defeating Hotchkiss

Sacred Heart Greenwich earned a return trip to the NEPSAC Class A final by defeating Hotchkiss School.

Sacred Heart Greenwich’s 2019 field hockey team made school history when it captured the NEPSAC championship. Now the Tigers’ 2021 team is extremely close to adding a second New England trophy to the program’s collection.

On the strength of a four-goal first half, top-seeded host Sacred Heart earned another appearance into the title game of the NEPSAC Class A Field Hockey Championships, posting a 4-2 win over fifth-seeded Hotchkiss School in Saturday’s semifinal-round.

The Tigers, who are riding a 16-game winning streak and sport an impressive 20-3 record, play second-seeded Phillips Academy Andover for the NEPSAC Class A championship today at Winsor School in Boston, Mass., at 2 p.m.

In Sacred Heart’s win against Hotchkiss on Saturday, it scored two goals in the first and second quarter to seize a 4-1 halftime lead, after the Bearcats tallied the game’s opening goal.

“We faced a very strong opponent today, who gave us a real match,” Sacred Heart coach Alex Gheorghe said. “We had moments where we had to work really hard to recover possession. It felt like today was a final. Now we have less than 24 hours to recover and refuel for tomorrow’s (today’s) big final.”

Hotchkiss’ Molly Donegan gave her team a 1-0 lead with first-quarter goal, then the Tigers responded with two straight goals in the quarter. Junior Delfina Gonzalez Lobo scored another clutch goal for Sacred Heart, evening the score with a tally off an assist from senior co-captain Caroline Nemec.

Later in the first period, Caroline Nemec, who has helped power the squad offensively all season, put the Tigers in front for good at 2-1, with a goal. Ines Araujo, a junior, stretched Sacred Heart’s lead, scoring off an assist from freshman Charley Nemec, making it 3-1 in the second quarter.

The Nemec combination gave SHG a three-goal advantage later in the second quarter. Caroline Nemec was assisted by junior Kate Nemec, putting the Tigers on top, 4-1 at halftime. The score remained the same until Grace Keefe of Hotchkiss converted a penalty stroke in the fourth quarter.

Teresa Harkins, a freshman, had a stellar game in goal, registering five saves for the victors.

“It is always a good feeling to beat Hotchkiss on our own field,” Sacred Heart’s junior athletes said. “We are very happy with today’s results. We’ve had an amazing season and are hoping to end it with a win in the finals tomorrow.” 

Said Gheorghe: “We hope that our team has enough tome to recover so we can put together a good performance.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s