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Lansdowne field hockey blanks Chesapeake

Senior Courtney Austin scored a game-high two goals to lead host Lansdowne (5-3) to an 8-0 victory over Chesapeake (0-9) in field hockey action Monday afternoon.

Austin leads the Vikings with 14 goals.

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Johannah Minter, Haleigh Nashwinter, Brittany Hasenei, Serenity Williams, Mackenzie Brinkley and Adriel Scales also scored for Lansdowne.

Austin had the first four shots of the game for Lansdowne, but it was Minter who scored the first goal.

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She knocked in a rebound with 4:18 gone in the first half.

Less than two minutes later, Mariah Berre inserted a penalty corner to Austin and, after her first shot attempt was blocked, she connected on the next one.

Nashwinter, Hasenei and Williams also scored in the first half for the Vikings.

Hasenei, who plays defense, scored her first goal of the season.

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The big lead allowed Lansdowne coach Lindsey Backes to move players around and get some experience for her JV players, who will only play four games this season because Loch Raven and Eastern Tech are the only other teams in Division II that have JV teams.

Austin scored 19 seconds into the second half and Brinkley and Scales also scored in the half.

Chesapeake was held without a shot, so Lansdowne goalies Nicole Campbell and Taylor Schneckenburger were not tested.

Austin, who scored three goals in three separate games this season, saw the lopsided victory as a way for the Vikings to sharpen their skills.

"It helps us with our passing and working together and playing as a team," Austin said.

They'll need that when they play at Eastern Tech on Thursday, Oct. 12.

"We lost a pretty tough one to Eastern Tech at the beginning of the season, but we play them again Thursday and I think it's going to be a really good game," said Austin, whose squad lost 4-1 to the Mavericks in the first game of the year.

“We played them on grass, but we are more of a turf team,” Backes said. “The grass and turf games are very different in this sport.”

Austin, who also plays basketball and lacrosse, has grown to love field hockey and plans to play after high school.

"I'm looking to play field hockey in college," Austin said. "I started playing field hockey my freshman year in high school and then I started playing club, so I got a lot of recognition from that and I get a lot offers."

She is looking at Division III Delaware Valley State as one possible school.

"I don't want to play D I because I'm not looking to play field hockey as my career, so I want to focus on my major, so that's why I want to go D III," she said.

Backes, in her ninth year as coach, knew Austin had the skills to play at a higher level when she promoted her to the varsity early in her freshman year.

Austin, who switched from the softball to lacrosse while at Lansdowne, now considers field hockey as her favorite sport.

“At first she said, ‘basketball’ and then she said ‘softball’ and we talked to her last year and said, ‘We think you need to focus on field hockey and then she got into some club teams and some clinics and that helped,” Backes said. “She played a lot over the summer and that really helped.”

Austin scored two goals in a 4-0 victory over Pikesville on Oct. 6 in a  triumph that was special for Backes.

“That was a fun game under the lights,” Backes said. “We lost to them the last couple of seasons so, it was really exciting to beat them this year.”

Lansdowne has also received solid play this season from sophomore Chelsea Butler and senior tri-captains Nashwinter, Williams and Hope Gardner.

“She [Naswinter] is a senior and she does a great job,” Backes said. “She doesn’t stand out, but she is a backbone player.”

After playing at Eastern Tech, the Vikings finish the season with home games against Patapsco (Oct. 16) and Oakland Mills (Oct.18).

cclary@baltsun.com

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