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Westminster adds up goals, victories 7-0 Owls have outscored their opponents 27-1


FREDERICK -- Figuring out how many goals Westminster has given up this season hasn't been a problem for Owls field hockey co-coach Sue Hooper. It is the "goals for" column that has her deferring to fellow co-coach Brenda Baker.

"You'll have to ask Brenda on that one, she has the book," Hooper said.

It's a math problem Hooper, Baker and the No. 4 Owls don't mind working out.

Including yesterday afternoon's 2-0 win at Thomas Johnson, the Owls (7-0) have outscored their opponents a combined 27-1 this season.

They've beaten some quality teams in dominating fashion with a roster full of seniors scoring from everywhere on the field.

Five players have at least three goals, with seniors Megan Magee and Jen Medura leading the way with six each.

Ask for the secret and you get a number of responses.

"They're just a very unselfish team," said Hooper. "They all want everybody to do well -- it's like a big family."

Said Magee, a senior captain in her fourth year on varsity: "It's teamwork. Every line is there to back each other up. We're also very close on and off the field."

Baker summed it up.

"They work hard and not just during the season. They go to camps and play year-round. This sport is their priority, and that's nice to have," she said.

All of that was evident yesterday, as the Owls scored both goals in the first half and coasted the rest of the way. Linnea Pagulayan scored from in close off a pass from Medura to get the Owls on the board midway through the first half and Medura made it 2-0 shortly after that with a goal of her own.

Whenever Thomas Johnson would clear it past the Westminster forwards, the Owls' links would provide support to send it right back in. On the rare occasion the Patriots got the ball to their offensive end, the Owls' defense would be there to turn action the other way. The Patriots' only shot on goal came past the midway point of the second half.

That's the norm at Westminster, where the Owls have made it a tradition to be still playing by the time Class 4A state semifinals roll around at Goucher College.

The system is another reason for the Owls' consistent success. Hooper and Baker handle both the junior varsity and varsity programs, keeping everyone on the same page.

Forward Ann Brennan (three goals, six assists) and defender Nikki Cornell are the team tri-captains along with Magee. Hooper said any of the 12 seniors could have been chosen as captains this season.

The past two seasons have ended with heartbreaking losses in the state semifinals.

"Not this year, it's all the way," said Brennan.

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