It was a productive afternoon for senior Zoe Pekins and the Hammond girls lacrosse team Friday. Not only did the Golden Bears match last year's win total after defeating visiting Wilde Lake, but for Pekins – the lone senior on the roster – it also marked her first win over the Wildecats in her varsity career.
"It's definitely a confidence booster, especially for our younger kids," said Pekins, who led her team with eight goals in the 13-9 victory. "We're a really young team so it's good to finally beat Wilde Lake for my senior season. But like honestly, we're going to have a good week next week definitely, coming off this win."
Hammond (3-2) established the lead early on, with Jane Ridgell feeding Pekins for the game's first goal about two minutes in. Tess Kostelec knotted the game up at three for Wilde Lake (2-1) midway through the half, then proceeded to give her team the lead on the ensuing score with just less than 14 minutes remaining in the half. Ridgell tied the game back up one minute later, which started a 6-0 run that helped Hammond get out to a 9-2 advantage at the break.
"Being a leader it's hard sometimes, especially in situations like when they came back," Pekins said, as she netted three goals during the scoring streak to end the half. "I have to recollect everybody and make sure we know what we're doing on offense, defense – we just got to get ready to go as quickly as possible."
A big loss came early for the Wildecats, however, as Kostelec was called for her second yellow card at the 11:50 mark of the first half with the game knotted at four. Wilde Lake missed her presence on the field, but managed to rally back in the second half.
"I told them they can't control a lot of things that happen in a game, and penalties don't exactly go the way you want them to, you got to put them behind you and focus on the end result and they did a pretty good job of that," said Wilde Lake coach Michael Rhodovi. "But with that being said, both teams played really well. Hammond played really hard. They wanted to win the game, we wanted to win the game, and I just told them, some games happen and some games don't."
The Wildecats cut it as close as three in the second half after Julia Bohse's goal with 16 minutes to play. But the Golden Bears played solid defensively, and with Pekins dominating on the offensive end – she tallied two more goals to push the cushion up to five, seemingly putting the game out of reach – they were able to close out and earn their third victory on the year.
"This season, honestly is a 100 times better than any season that I've played at Hammond," Pekins said. "The team, not saying any other team was bad, but the connections this year, the play, we're getting better and a lot faster than we were the following season, so it's a big improvement and it's great to see."
Ridgell followed Pekins offensively, recording three goals and one assist, while Rachel McClanahan and Sydney Monthe each tallied one score.
"It's been a long time coming," said Golden Bears coach Bill Smith. "But it's a really good group of girls that know we're pushing hard because we're capable and I think they're coming together so I'm happy."
Kostelec, Sarah Moore, Katie Aubin and Bohse each recorded two goals, while Kate Glaros totaled two assists and a goal for the Wildecats. Jenna Oler played big in goal for Wilde Lake, registering 13 saves on 26 shots against.
"Jenna is amazing. She puts everything on her back. She hangs in there... my girls hung in there and did not fall apart on themselves. They stuck through it no matter what was in thrown at them, in front of them," Rhodovi added. "Congrats to Hammond, they did really well, they wanted to win the game and they played to win."
Hammond's next game comes at home against Atholton on Monday, while Wilde Lake gets back on the field Tuesday at home versus River Hill.
Hammond 13, Wilde Lake 9 (Friday, April 8)
Goals: Ha – Pekins 8, Ridgell 3, McClanahan 1, Monthe 1; WL – Kostelec 2, Moore 2, Bohse 2, Aubin 2, Glaros 1.
Assists: Ha – Ridgell 1, Monthe 1; WL – Glaros 2.
Saves: Ha – Woodley 4; WL – Oler 13.
Halftime: 9-4 Hammond.
Howard bounces back with huge win over Centennial
Coming off a disappointing loss to Broadneck, the Lions picked up their play Friday against the hosting Eagles to earn a 13-point victory and boost their overall mark to 3-2 on the year.
"No we did not play well at Broadneck at all," said first-year Howard coach Diana Carey after the 15-2 win Friday. "We did not have the ball movement. Way too much of just the individual stuff and trying to you know, dodge through three people; it's just not going to happen. They definitely scouted us. They knew our go-to girls and they were picking us off quickly and we weren't able to adjust, so we really tried to work on changing that mindset, which I think was good today."
The Lions jumped out to an 8-2 halftime lead and dominated possession straight off the draw. Emileigh Scott did an excellent job on the draws, winning eight in the game for Howard. Jenny Kinsey totaled a game-high four goals, while also adding one assist. Ella Orzechowski recorded three goals and three assists, followed by Katie Martin who added two goals and two assists on the night.
"I think we played more as a team, which I think is important and that's something we've been talking about and working on," Carey said. "Trying to be less individual and moving the ball faster, quicker, working off of cuts and I think we've had better success with it. Relying less on plays and much more on motion offense, which is also important. Our defense played well and also we won the draws. Winning the draws is a big part of the game."
Carey was really pleased with the way her girls moved the ball, something she has emphasized throughout the start of the season.
"Absolutely, much, much better," she said. "We've been working on it and you know, this is a tough, tough schedule that we have, I mean I love it. I love the fact that you have to step up every single game, every single team we play is a good team and I think it's great. But obviously this is a great win for the girls. Centennial is a very, very good team, so we were really pleased to come away with this."
Lauren Bracey and Peyton Conley scored the two goals for Centennial, who came off a hard-fought loss against Glenelg Wednesday.
"Things weren't clicking for us today. I think we are a lot better than what we showed in this game. Our passes and our transitions were weak, when usually that is one of our strong points. I just think it's something that we need to work on," said Eagles assistant coach Ellen Johnson. "We're taking each game, game by game. We're trying to grow in this county and I think we showed a lot of growth against Glenelg and we were trying to keep that momentum going, but it just wasn't clicking tonight. We're going back to the drawing board, going back to basics and making sure we're ready for the next games next week."
Centennial was short handed entering the game against the Lions, touting just one sub, while also missing head coach Bethany Cunha who is on bed rest for the duration of her pregnancy. Johnson and fellow assistant coach Cianna Lawrence led the team on the sidelines Friday, but Cunha directed somewhat, as she Face Timed in for the majority of the game.
"I think it is a huge hit to us that she's not here, but a lot of what we're doing is consistent to what she's planned for our team and we're ready to be proxied by her," Johnson said. "She was basically Face Timing for the whole game. It's definitely hard, but as a team we're really tight and we're really close, so we haven't missed that much of a beat. I don't think that was really a factor in this game. I think the girls are really doing really well despite this new kind of change, but we're hoping we show some more growth than we did tonight. We were pretty disappointed in ourselves across the board, but they played hard. They fought every second until the end. They were busting their butts off, but it just wasn't enough tonight."
Centennial (2-3) and Howard are both back on the field Tuesday, with the Eagles visiting Reservoir and the Lions taking on South River.
Glenelg Country (7-0) 20, St. Johns 8 (Friday, April 8)
The Dragons, only up by two at halftime, poured on the offense in the following 25 minutes of action and finished out with a 12-point victory, upping their record to 7-0 on the year.
It is Glenelg Country's second 20-plus goal performance of the season, as it also kept its opponent under double-digits for the sixth time.
Julia Sheehan and Bobbie Haney each totaled four goals apiece, while Haney also added an assist on the day.
The Dragons will try and continue their undefeated streak Monday, as they travel to St. Johns to complete the home-and-home. The game is scheduled for a 4 p.m. start.
Goals: GCS – Sheehan 4, Haney 4, Rushe 3, Bannister 2, O'Leary 2, Arnold 2, Glaros 1, Bateman 1, Olaniyan 1; SJ – Plamondon 3, Breen 2, Fitzgerald 2, Remburg 1.
Assists: GCS – Haney 1, Bateman 1, Arnold 1; SJ – Remburg 1.
Saves: GCS – Layton 4, Dyer 3; SJ
Halftime: 8-6 GCS.
Marriotts Ridge (5-0) 18, River Hill (1-2) 5 (Friday, April 8)
The Mustangs continue to roll, as they earn their first county win on the season and add to their perfect overall mark.
Junior midfielder Caroline Blalock finished with a game-high six goals, while also adding one assist in the victory. Junior attack Lily Kennedy followed with three goals, while Sarah Blalock and Lexi Souder each tallied two goals and one assist.
Gabby Hamburger registered four-of-five of the Hawks goals, with Gracie Seybold tallying the other. Annie Maloney did work in the cage, as she registered 17 saves in the outing.
Marriotts Ridge and River Hill resume play again Tuesday, as the Mustangs take on Broadneck at home, while the Hawks travel to Wilde Lake. Both games are scheduled for a 5:30 p.m. start.
Goals: MR – C. Blalock 6, Kennedy 3, Simpson 2, S. Blalock 2, Souder 2, Sullivan 1, Thompson 1, Lower 1; RH – Hamburger 4, Seybold 1.
Assists: MR – C. Blalock 1, Souder 1, S. Blalock 1.
Saves: MR – Ranta 3, Huston 1; RH – Maloney 17.
Halftime: 9-3 MR.
Mt. Hebron (4-2) 14, Reservoir (2-2) 5 (Friday, April 8)
The Vikings ended their two-game losing streak Friday, by earning their first county win of the year with a nine-point victory over the hosting Gators.
Seniors Jordan Stevens and Sorana Larson led the way offensively, totaling seven and five goals, respectively, while junior Jen Schaaf registered seven saves in net.
It was the first in-county game for Mt. Hebron, who has had a tough stretch as of late, taking on McDonogh and Arundel County powerhouse Severna Park in back-to-back matches last week. The Vikings continue their in-county play, as they head to Atholton on Tuesday for a 5:30 p.m. matchup.
Michelle Armstrong recorded a team-high three goals for Reservoir, with Haley Tiller and Greta Schuster registering the other two scores. Elizabeth Hyde made 12 saves in net.
After starting the season 2-0, the Gators have suffered their second loss in three days, but they will try and end that streak Tuesday when they host Centennial.
Goals: MH – Stevens 7, Larson 5, Demek 1, Arens 1; Re – Armstrong 3, Tiller 1, Schuster 1.
Saves: MH – Schaaf 7; Hyde 12.
Glenelg (6-0) 13, Atholton (2-1) 5 (Friday, April 8)
The Gladiators continue their perfect season after handing the visiting Raiders their first loss of the season.
Atholton struggled finding its rhythm offensively against the talented Glenelg defense, which has yet to succumb more than eight goals in a single game, and registered its third contest of six or less goals.
Meaghan Quinn scored two of the Raiders goals, while Emma Johnson, KK Shepherd and Kelley Flynn tallied one each, respectively.
As for the Gladiators they were led by sophomore attacker Georgia Esmond, as she buried a game-high seven goals in the win. Alayna Pagnotta and Peighton Stone followed offensively, tallying two goals each, respectively.
In net Maddie McSally recorded nine saves for Glenelg, while Hannah Bizokas and Maddy Eaton each totaled two stops for Atholton.
The Raiders are back in action Monday, as they play in their season-opener against Hammond at 5:30, while the Gladiators head to Severna Park Tuesday, also for a 5:30 p.m. matchup.
Goals: G – G. Esmond 7, Pagnotta 2, Stone 2, Callahan 1, Griffith 1; A – M. Quinn 2, Johnson 1, Shepherd 1, Flynn 1.
Assists: G – Pagnotta 3, G. Esmond 2, Callahan 2, LeTellier 1.
Saves: G – McSally 9; A – Bizucas 2, Eaton 2.
Halftime: 6-1 Glenelg.
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