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Archive for November 2, 2020

Nov. 2, 2020 — Kingston Wyoming Seminary (Pa.) 1, Exeter Wyoming Area (Pa.) 0, 2 OT

POSTGAME Thanks, everyone, for tuning in. Good night, good hockey

POSTGAME Wyoming Area bossed the game for a good portion of regulation and parts of overtime. But Wyoming Seminary had the possession and the goals in the second overtime session, scoring the OT winner to send the Blue Knights into the Class A state tournament

FULL TIME That’s the end of the game with Wyoming Seminary winning the game 1-0 and sending a valiant Wyoming Area side home for the rest of the season

74:02 SEM PC and GOAL A slow-developing play wound up drawing three Wyoming Area players to the edge of the circle, allowing for an easy tap-in at the far post by Ella Barbacci! What a game!

71:15 SEM PC Initial pass play took too long; follow-up shot is stopped but an obstruction is called on the offense

70:00 The second half of extra time begins

END 1st OT The horn ends and, still, nobody has scored

69:15 Wyoming Area has an open look on the right but is ridden off the ball before getting off a shot

68:30 SEM PC Shot goes wide; what a chance that was on the backhander!

66:45 Gorgeous backhander by the Wyoming Area attack; Magnotta says no

65:00 Wyoming Seminary is able to get good pressure in the attack end; can they make something of this?

61:30 Just like that, Wyoming Seminary has an open shot in the circle that is kicked away by the Wyoming Area goalkeeper

60:30 WA has the first foray on attack but cannot get a good shot away

60:00 7-on-7 OT is under way

END REGULATION: The sides are even at 0-0. We’ll now have up to two 10-minute periods of extra time, with the golden-goal rule in effect. If nobody scores in overtime, the FIH penalty shootout will be implemented

58:00 But credit Wyoming Seminary for keeping on the pressure; you wouldn’t know that the Knights are playing short

57:00 SEM GREEN CARD Oh, my. This is not what you want in such a sight game when it’s coming down the last few minutes

55:00 SEM PC Once again, the Warriors are able to defend the corner

55:44 SEM PC Defensed by Wyoming Area; will re-rack

53:58 Long pass finds a Sem stick in that sliver next to the goal cage on the offensive left wing, but cannot get off a shot

52:35 Uh-oh. Sem tries to flip the ball up the field but catches the edge in the turf and the ball only goes a few yards; Wyoming Area is able to get it into the circle and a 23M is the result. Could have been a corner with the force of the Sem tackle on this play

50:20 WA PC 1-Up saved by Magnotta; rebound goes wide!

49:00 WA PC Hi-lo from the Brooklyn side is shot wide of the cage

46:45 Wyoming Seminary almost had a long through ball to an open player in the circle, but the player could not catch up to it

45:00 The final quarter of regulation begins; this could be a dandy

END THIRD At three-quarter time, the game remains goalless

44:59+ WA PC Shot finds a pile of bodies in the front; Magnotta with two stops and it’s amazing that neither a stroke nor a corner was called

43:00 WA PC Angles shot hits Magnotta on the pads

41:30 Free hit in a promising position for Sem, but the play is defensed and cleared; how about a call to this Warrior defense?

38:15 WA PC Lateral pass on the option-right broken up; follow-up shot goes over the top of the cage

36:30 Wyoming Area has been dominating the play in this phase of the game; I’m amazed they haven’t scored off at least one penalty corner

34:00 WA PC Started from the Brooklyn side, option right back to the inserter, but no shot comes

30:00 The second half is under way

HALFTIME It looks like we are set for yet another close playoff game between these two schools. I think the outcome hinges on a mistake or error rather than an achievement; let’s see what happens

HALFTIME These sides have poked, prodded, and even gotten some penalty corner chances. But neither side has been able to put the ball into the goal cage

END HALF We are at 0-0 going to the interval

26:30 SEM PC Ball goes to the left of the cage but is fumbled out of bounds

25:25 SEM PC Dragflick is low and wide of the cage

25:00 On the ensuing snowbird, the WA goalie makes a tackle that sends the Blue Knights’ forward flying; I’ve seen penalty strokes given for less than that

24:20 WA PC Magnotta with the stop; she is helping keep her side in this one

21:15 WA PC Shot is blocked away; Sem is living dangerously by yielding this many corners in a row

19:15 WA PC Shot is denied by the Wyoming Seminary defense

17:20 WA PC The insert is mistrapped and Sem clears

15:00 The second quarter begins

END FIRST The sides are level at quarter-time

14:19 The Wyoming Area goalie has to come way off her line in order to stop a chance

11:30 Sem tries to round the right side, but the ball is deflected out of play; Knights get a 23M free-in

9:40 WA PC Defensed and cleared!

9:00 WA PC Shot blocked by the corner flyer, but we’ll re-rack for the stick obstruction

8:00 WA PC Shot is saved by Magnotta; will re-rack

5:00 Wyoming Area is pressing the issue in the attacking third, but is not able to get off a good shot on cage

0:00 The game is on

PREGAME Wyoming Area is wearing the all-green with gold numbers; Wyoming Seminary is in the white tops with navy kilts

PREGAME The teams are warming up on the turf at Klassner Field, temperatures around 38 degrees

PREGAME Let’s refocus this for you: only one of these two teams goes onto the state tournament; the loser goes home. I think the coaches and players may take more physical and tactical risks today than in the sum total of the entire season

PREGAME Wyoming Seminary beat Wyoming Area 1-0 in overtime of the teams’ previous meeting on Sept. 23rd; Wyoming Area has played Emmaus (Pa.) tough in a home-and-home series, taking the Hornets into overtime on Oct. 3, and only losing by four in the return match two weeks later (we say “only” because Emmaus’ average winning margin against teams not named Wyoming Area this year is 11.89 goals a game)

PREGAME The players to watch for Wyoming Seminary are forward Ella Barbacci and goalkeeper Mia Magnotta

PREGAME When Wyoming Area has the ball, take a good look at forward Kayla Kiwak, holding midfielder Mackenzie Switzer, and Antonia Manicello

PREGAME These two teams were in a rich seam of form a year ago, with Wyoming Seminary winning the Class A state final over Oley (Pa.) Valley, the team that ousted Wyoming Area four days earlier in the state semifinals

PREGAME Wyoming Seminary is 14-0 on the season, while Wyoming Area is 16-2

PREGAME Hello, and welcome to this PIAA District 2 Class A final between Exeter Wyoming Area (Pa.) and Kingston Wyoming Seminary (Pa.)

Nov. 2, 2020 — Delmar (Del.) 2, Lewes Cape Henlopen (Del.) 0

POSTGAME Thanks for joining us for the liveblog; good day, good hockey

POSTGAME Cape Henlopen played as well as you could against a team with that much skill. But Delmar did not make this an easy task. On a Monday, the weekend of the Daylight Savings Time change, and playing into the wind during the second half, it was Ella Shockley who was able to solve the Viking defense

FULL TIME The horn sounds at Champions Field with Delmar winning 2-0

59:09 Vikings enter the striking circle, uncorking a shot that goes just wide!

57:30 Delmar with a pass attempt whistled down for advancing

56:00 A Cape steal and an run through the offensive right wing by Sabbagh leads to a pass which does not find a teammate; Vikings ball

51:00 Delmar scoots in and gets off a backhander that is saved by Heffernan

50:30 DEL PC Shot is saved, Delmar will get a 23M free-in

47:30 DEL PC Insert is mistrapped, and Cape clears

45:00 The fourth quarter begins; Delmar is still attacking into a stiff wind, but that didn’t seem to faze them a bit in the third

END THIRD We’re at three-quarter time, and Delmar has a 2-0 lead. a win will give the Wildcats their fourth straight win over the Vikings; indeed, the last time Delmar lost a game was Oct. 22, 2016. The loss was to Cape Henlopen

44:15 CH PC Ball is slung into the mixer but does not force a save by Davis; Delmar clears its lines

42:00 CH PC The mistrap leads to a near-snowbird by Delmar, but the long diagonal goes over the sideline

41:00 CH PC Long shot denied by Davis; was that her first save of the game?

39:25 DHS GOAL The lead is doubled on a long backhander from the edge of the striking circle that gets though the defense; Shockley gets credit for the goal, with Macy Bradford assisting; it’s 2-0 Delmar

36:45 Delmar has the ball in the left wing and with an open teammate on the doorstep, but the Wildcats turn it over; unlucky. One of those chances is going to squirt through before the day is over

31:19 That’s the way to start a half, especially in a rivalry match. This site’s Fifth Law of Field Hockey holds that a goal in the first or the last five minutes of a half count for more than just the goal on the board, but it also gives the scoring team a mental advantage

31:19 DHS GOAL Delmar is able to flood the circle, even a player short, and score off a rebound. Ella Shockley gets credit for the score; Wildcats lead 1-0

30:00 The second half is under way after both teams walked out of their huddles onto the pitch; will this match pick up in intensity?

HALFTIME Interesting sidebar: Both towns in which these schools are located are exceedingly small. Delmar is the smallest town in Delaware (population 1,597) with a scholastic field hockey team. Lewes, Del. is not that much bigger, at 2,797. So why are the teams in two different divisions when it comes to state tournament play? Because of a state-mandated school plan in 1969, the high schools of Lewes, Milton, and Rehoboth Beach merged into one school district

HALFTIME For two sitting state champions, this game has been remarkable in terms of the lack of attacking chances. Delmar is the only side that has forced a save and Julie Heffernan has certainly done her job today

END HALF We reach the interval with the sides level

29:20 It looks like we have a card on Delmar; not sure the length of the penalty, but this will carry over into the second half

29:10 Delmar makes a steal and the forward chips the goalie, but she reaches up with her big foam pad and denies the chance!

27:50 Delmar frames the goal with three people on the doorstep but can’t jam it home

24:00 Delmar gets the ball into the circle, but the backhander is not on frame; 16Y for Henlopen

22:00 Numbers for Henlopen on the left wing, but the ball rolls over the endline for a 16Y free out for Delmar

20:00 DEL PC The initial shot is defensed by the CH flyer, but goalie Julie Heffernan is able to make two remarkable saves off the follow-up shots! Wow!

17:00 Delmar springs through to the circle, but the Vikings are able to cut down the angles

16:00 Delmar has momentum and possession, but the Vikings have eight players back and stymie the Wildcats’ attacking foray

15:00 The second quarter is under way

END FIRST At quarter-time, the sides are level. Cape Henlopen, as is its wont, is not afraid of its league rival and is looking to make the simple play in order to stop the Delmar attack

14:40 Delmar now tries the left wing and the play is just tackled away

14:00 Cape tries to round the corner on the left side, but the player slips and gives up possession

9:20 CH PC 1-up is whistled down for danger

6:40 A Viking turnover leads to a Delmar run into the attack zone with space and speed, but Henlopen clears its lines

4:30 Cape Henlopen is attacking into the stiff breeze that has the huge American flag overlooking the scorer’s table flying at full tilt

3:00 Neither team has yet been able to get sustained possession in the opposition’s final third; defenses are absorbing the pressure

0:00 The game is on

PREGAME Delmar is in the all-orange with navy and white numbers and trim; Cape Henlopen is in the white with blue numbers and yellow trim

PREGAME The teams are warming up on the turf Champions Stadium, temperature about 49 degrees with winds around 20 miles an hour. In a game which favors the skilled, could weather conditions decide this match?

PREGAME For Cape Henlopen, watch for junior forward Noelle Sabbagh, attacking midfielder Reagan Ciabattoni, and goalkeeper Julie Heffernan today

PREGAME Delmar’s players to watch include goalie Kelly Davis, fullback Morgan Bradford, forward Maci Bradford, and midfielder Josie Hollamon

PREGAME Delmar is also trying to extend a winning streak which is amongst the top 20 in National Federation history. They’re also trying to do it on a Monday, which is typically a “trap” situation for most teams since a lot of public-school teams do not practice on Sunday

PREGAME Today is therefore the closest thing you’re ever going to get to a Tournament of Champions in the Diamond State

PREGAME This is a matchup of two teams which have dominated not only Henlopen Conference play, but state tournament play the last decade. Cape Henlopen has won eight state championships in the last nine years, while Delmar has won the last four Division 2 state titles

PREGAME Delmar is the Iceland of scholastic field hockey in the United States. It is a team that draws from the smallest town in Delaware that has a scholastic field hockey team, but the team is a very skilled and creative unit that plays differently from most, letting the ball do the work and generating corners for its attack

PREGAME Delmar, the No. 1 team in the TopOfTheCircle.com Top 10, is 3-0 this season, while Cape Henlopen is 4-0

PREGAME Hello, and welcome to our liveblog of this Henlopen Conference matchup between Delmar (Del.) and Lewes Cape Henlopen (Del.)

Nov. 2, 2020 — Backhanding the way to a championship

A caravan of dark sports utility vehicles cluttered an access road last week in Maryland Heights, Mo. during the second half of a Midwest Field Hockey Association Tournament semifinal between St. Louis Villa Duchesne (Mo.) and St. Louis Cor Jesu (Mo.).

Parents, coaches, and spectators for the second game between St. Louis John Burroughs (Mo.) and St. Louis Mary Institute-Country Day School (Mo.) were arriving at SportPort for the second half of the doubleheader, and the action in the first game was such that you couldn’t help but to slow down and take a peek.

The late arrivers would have done well to retain details of a goal scored in the third quarter of the semifinal. On the play, Villa Duchesne sophomore Gigi Edwards flipped a through pass into the striking circle, where leading scorer Taryn Tkachuk sprang behind the Cor Jesu defensive line and uncorked an unstoppable backhand golazo underneath the crossbar.

That’s because Villa Duchesne, in overtime of the final against Burroughs, were working the ball into the attack end. Suzy Keefer crossed the ball to the middle, and the ball deflected off the stick of teammate Georgia Leary towards a wide-open Tkachuk, who had a yawning goal cage in front of her.

As she did two days earlier, Tkachuk uncorked a backhand shot that flew into the goal cage just under the crossbar.

Golazo!

For the senior, committed to the University of Virginia, her 134th and 135th career goals were truly spectacular. I can’t wait to see what she does at the next level.