Manchester Valley might have had nightmares about Westminster's Madi Macera's goal-scoring ability prior to the county rivals' field hockey matchup Tuesday.
Macera, a senior forward, scored three goals to power the Owls to a 3-1 victory over the Mavericks in the county opener for both teams.
Macera seemed to be in front of the Manchester Valley goal most of the game as Westminster (4-2, 1-0 county) dominated play — the Owls outshot the Mavericks 19-8, and had a 19-2 edge in penalty corners.
Macera now has 12 goals on the season.
She totaled four in a season-opening rout of John Carroll on Sept. 2, and added three in a thumping of Patterson Mill 10 days later.
"Madi has been on the varsity since she was a freshman," Westminster third-year coach Katie McDonald said. "She is player I said to look out for every year. She is the type of player once she scores one goal, you can see her get that spark and she just keeps going.
"She's very vocal and I think she is a good at communicating where she is on the field," she added. "She has a lot of confidence."
Macera and her teammates put a lot of pressure on Manchester Valley goalie Hannah Yaede (18 saves), and the defense of Anna Ringley, Becca Wade, and Jaclynn Gouge from the very start of the game.
Yaede saved consecutive shots in the first four minutes from Veronica Maring, including a point-blank attempt. The Owls also had a pair of penalty corners during that stretch.
Westminster goalie Lauren Jenne saved a shot from Manchester Valley's Madison Callahan soon after that offensive flurry.
The Mavericks (3-2, 0-1) didn't record another shot until the final minute of the half.
With 7:59 remaining in the first half, Macera beat a defender and Yaede with a blistering shot to the left corner. Alli Zimmerman was credited with the assist.
"I was afraid we would be a little nervous because when we played them last year, it was really close," Jenne said. "But we came out super strong and didn't let them by us. The ball was their side of the field most of the game. We were shooting most of the game."
Westminster went up 2-0 with 10:57 remaining in the second half. Macera scored on a pass from Maring.
Less than three minutes later, Julia Rogalski knocked the ball into the 16-yard circle and Macera back-handed the ball into the goal.
Manchester Valley finished the scoring with 3:34 remaining when Callahan found the back of the cage.
"There were five minutes in the second half where they capitalized on two goals," Manchester Valley coach Terry Duryea said. "Those were the five minutes I would take back if I could. I think for 55 minutes of the game we had a very good game."
Goals: MV-Madi Callahan; W-Madi Macera 3.
Assists: MV-Annika McCallum; W-Alli Zimmerman, Julia Rogalski, Veronica Maring.