Seton Keough field hockey blanks Friends

Seton Keough opened the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association B Conference field hockey regular season with a 4-0 victory over visiting Friends on Thursday afternoon, but it took a few motivating words at halftime from new head coach Maureen Stumme to get them going.

The Gators led 1-0 on a first-half goal by senior Emily Lemanski after she rebounded a shot by Katie Audino, but Stumme felt the Gators should have more.


She compared wanting the ball more than the opposition, to wanting it more than one of your siblings.

"I said, 'We can't fall apart now. We need to play with confidence. You've got to want that ball and you've got to want it in the back of the cage and you can't be happy until you hear it in the back of the cage and it took a couple minutes and then all of the sudden they really came together," Stumme said.


Lemanski rattled the cage for a 2-0 lead midway through the second half after a penalty corner pass started by Jessica Wells.

Audino connected moments later with the most aesthetically pleasing goal of the day when her backhand slice rattled the cage.

"I do a lot of shooting stuff at home," Audino said. "Basically, whenever I have free time, I like to go and hit a ball around."

Ironically, she often hits with senior co-captain and classmate Lemanski because they live two houses away from each other.

Audino, fittingly added the final goal, off Wells' assist, as the two captains both scored two each.

The coach praised the play of the captains who will be developing several players who have never played field hockey on the varsity level because they couldn't field a junior varsity this season.

"Emily and Katie have been great captains," Stumme said. "They are great leaders, really helping to try and nurture these kids."

Lemanski, whose sister graduated last year and is now playing club field hockey at Clemson University, felt the communication was better against Friends as the game wore on.

"We just talked about communication and how everyone need to work together and step up and be a part of the team," Lemanski said.

In the first half, they put the pressure on, but the Quaker defense, led by seniors Caitlin Donovan and Bo Brand, freshman Sydney Wilson and midfielder Isabel Garcia-Moreno, was stingy around the cage.

The young Gator defense of first-year sophomore player Madie Altenburg, freshman Erin Risch and senior Sarah Asseng was hardly challenged and Gator goalie Megan March only faced two shots all game.

But, Altenburg, who was convinced to try out by Audino, has learned plenty of lessons playing against Lemanski and Audino, who has committed to Division I University of New Hampshire to play field hockey.


"I've had great help from these two definitely, on the field and off the field," said the Catonsville resident. "We definitely look up to them during practice and during the games."

Her defensive partner, Risch, and attacker Kevilyn Frazer are products of the Catonsville recreation field hockey program, but Altenburg has only played lacrosse before trying field hockey this fall.

She is one of many newcomers learning on the fly for the Gators.

'We are going to have our growing pains, obviously, but I don't know what this season holds for us," said Stumme, who took over for Tom Jester, who guided the Gators to the B Conference championship in 2012.

Friends, who dropped its season opener to A Conference foe Roland Park, 6-0, has five freshmen and two sophomores on their roster so they too will need to rely on the leadership of seniors Brand, Donovan and Lynne Cullen and juniors Moreno, Molly Dunn, Kira Barrett, Connor Hardy and Kate Johnson.

"I respect those coaches tremendously," Stumme said. "They are always well-coached and always fast."

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