The plight of every coach is to get his or her team to play to its potential for the entire 60 minutes of a contest. The Marriotts Ridge and Howard field hockey teams made their coaches proud on Wednesday night, with both teams reaching a crescendo over the last 13 minutes, and the Mustangs prevailing, 3-2.

Rebecca Biegel scored the game-winner with 5:38 left to play in the game. It was a fast break situation with an odd-man advantage for the Mustangs, which Biegel jumped on as the ball was crossed her way on the right post.

"I usually don’t play right wing, but that's where I was. There was a cross to the post and I hit it in," she said.

The game didn’t start off exciting. In fact, it didn’t start until 4 p.m., 30 minutes past its scheduled start time. The reason for the delay was the condition of the field and whether it was suitable and safe to play. The officials finally decided to go ahead with the game. After the elongated warm-ups, both teams started sluggishly.

Howard’s Casey White said, “It was kind of a tough game, especially starting late with the field conditions. It brought the mood down a little bit. So I thought when the game started it wasn’t intense for either team. As the game progressed, it picked up especially when goals started being scored.”

That scoring took a while to get going. The first goal of the game came off a penalty stroke scored by the Lions’ Emily Penn more than halfway through the first half. Howard controlled the ball and the field for the majority of the half. Marriotts Ridge managed to create a couple of fast breaks and a series of corners. After one of the Mustang corners played out, there was traffic in front of the cage and Jenna Kerr put it past Lions keeper Alli Jakubek (4 saves) with 3:41 left in the half.

The second half saw more fight from both sides. Just six minutes in, another penalty stroke was called and Penn stepped up again. This time, however, her shot was wide. The play evened out between the Mustangs and Lions. The Mustangs’ keeper Sophia Hamilton (15 saves) made some really impressive saves in traffic to keep Marriotts Ridge in the game.

It was almost as if an alarm sounded signaling that time was running out because at about the 15 minute mark, both teams started to play with an extreme sense of urgency. Maddie Courtney tallied the first goal of the second half at 12:45 off an assist from Kerr as the result of a corner play. Howard answered back six minutes later. Hamilton had gone down for a shot and White collected the rebound and rocketed it into the goal. It was even for exactly 33 seconds until Biegel answered with the game winner.

“It was very exciting and good for them to recognize that you can come back after a goal is scored against you and score again and it doesn’t have to take 5 minutes. It can happen in less than a minute,” said Marriotts Ridge coach Stacie Gado. “That’s a confidence booster for them.”

Howard retaliated 1:15 after Biegel’s goal when White apparently scored on a corner play. But the officials ruled the shot illegal, stating it was a lifted drive (not allowed on a corner hit) and not a flicked ball. The goal was called back. The game ended.

Howard out-shot Marriotts Ridge 17-7 and had an advantage in corners 16-5.

In hockey it’s not how many opportunities you have, but rather what you do with what you’re given. In this contest, Marriotts Ridge was able to finish one goal ahead.

Marriotts Ridge 3, Howard 2

GoalsMR: Kerr, Courtney, Biegel; Ho: Penn, White.
AssistsMR: Kerr 2; Ho: None.
SavesMR: Hamilton 15; Ho: Jakubek 4.
Half — 1-1.


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Around the league

Reservoir 2, Oakland Mills 0

Freshman Carly Clarke scored the game-winner and junior Shayna Tiller added an insurance goal as Reservoir earned it’s first victory of the season. Celine Manneville recorded nine saves for Oakland Mills in the loss.

GoalsRe: Clarke, Tiller.
AssistsRe: Blanchard.
SavesRe: Lynch 4; OM: Manneville 9.
Half — 1-0.

Long Reach 3, Centennial 2 (OT)

Clarissa Lopez-Diarte scored one in regulation and one in overtime in Long Reach’s victory over Centennial.

GoalsLR: Lopez-Diarte 2, McClelland; C: Maclean, Uribe.
AssistsLR: McClelland, Williams; C: Maclean, Mongilio.
SavesLR: Cote 10; C: Cosentino 13.
Half — 1-1.

Glenelg 14, Hammond 0

Ivy Meissner and Stephanie Asher each had a hat trick in Glenelg’s victory over Hammond. Shannon Burt had 23 saves in goal for the Bears.

GoalsG: Meissner 3, Asher 3, Philie 2, Regan 2,  Baker 2, Taylor, Vandewall.
AssistsG: Asher 2, Taylor 2, Russo, Baker, Vandewall.
SavesG: Hoyt 0, Goodman 1; Ha: Burt 23.

Seton Keough 1, Glenelg Country 0

SavesGCS: Bates 9, Johnson 10.

Standings (as of Oct. 3)

Atholton, 7-0 county, 7-1 overall
Glenelg, 6-0, 7-1
River Hill, 6-1, 9-1
Mt Hebron, 5-2, 7-2
Marriotts Ridge, 5-2, 7-3
Howard, 4-3, 6-3
Long Reach, 3-4, 5-5
Centennial, 2-5, 2-8
Wilde Lake, 1-5
Hammond, 1-6, 1-7
Reservoir, 1-6, 1-9
Oakland Mills, 0-7, 1-7
Glenelg Country, 2-3 IAAM B, 3-4