A year ago, Westminster's field hockey team jumped out to an 8-0 start, outscoring opponents 42-0, but then struggled against its toughest competition.
This year, coach Mary Rivera scheduled a few tougher games in the early going, including yesterday's season opener at defending Carroll County champion Century. Yesterday, the No. 14 Owls proved up to the challenge, knocking off the No. 12 Knights 2-0, to avenge the loss that ended last season's eight-game winning streak.
"Last year, it was all easy games and all of our hard games were at the end of the season, so we didn't feel like we were adequately prepared for the competition," said Owls senior midfielder Bailey McDonogh. "This is our biggest game. Last year, it was the first game we lost ... so that just fueled the fire for today. This is just the start, but it's a really important game for us."
Beth Jancuska and Sarah Barnes scored first-half goals and freshman goalie Emily Colliflower, just up from junior varsity, made a critical save in the second half as the Owls began what could be a heated, multi-team race for the Carroll County title.
No. 1 McDonogh 3, St. Paul's 0 -- Chris Agorsor scored one of the three goals to lead the Eagles (3-0) over the Crusaders (0-1). McDonogh goalie Tom Caso did not face a single shot on goal.
North Carroll 2, Bel Air 1 -- Sophomore Steve Hamilton scored the go-ahead goal in the 16th minute to propel the Panthers (1-0) over the Bobcats (0-1). The goal was assisted by both Jacob Stocksdale and Nick D'Amario.
No. 15 Eastern Tech 3, Catholic 0 -- Jasmine Jordan scored the final goal in the 36th minute to put the game out of reach for the Mavericks over the Cubs in the first game of the season.
Mt. Carmel 2, Beth Tfiloh 1, OT -- Sophomore forward April Mitchell scored both goals to power the Cougars (1-0) past the Warriors (0-1) in overtime. Mitchell scored the winning goal on a penalty kick.