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Sept. 23-25, 2022 — A word on our NHSI coverage

Hi, all.

As we said a couple of days ago, there are going to be 68 games at the National High School Invitational. I can’t possibly follow them all. Instead, I’m going to try to focus on the 12 games we highlighted on Wednesday.

For each of these games, we’re going to endeavor to have a postgame interview with a player or coach from the winning team. We’ll post these on our social media channels, just like we did for our preseason lists of top teams in Division I, Division II, and Division III, as well as the preseason Top 10.

We’ll endeavor to get these up on our TikTok, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube outlets as soon as we can.

Sept. 23, 2022 — Friday Statwatch for games played through Sept. 21

Hi, everyone. We’re kicking off our weekly Statwatch package on the first day of the National High School Invitational.

First off, a couple of rules of the road. The most important is that these statistics are through games played through the previous Wednesday. These will not show up in the continuously-updated “Chasing History” statistics, even though we’ve had a couple of items which could have shown up but for the Wednesday deadline. Note that, for example, Delmar is credited in this blog entry with 101 straight wins, but the Wildcats won yesterday to bring their number to 102. We’ll have disconnects like these throughout the season, but we’ll try to get them right by the end of the year.

Thus far this year, our statistical occurrence of note is the fact that Rachel Herbine, the senior from Emmaus (Pa.) became the 13th known U.S. scholastic field hockey player to score 100 goals and assist on 100 more in a career. In addition, she tops both the total goals and total assists list this week, which is pretty remarkable. I don’t remember any single player topping both lists.

Our stats are called from, amongst other sources, MaxPreps, Berks Game Day, the KHSAA, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and Advance Media.

We would like to get as many coaches and other field hockey people to register for the MaxPreps.com platform, and we encourage you to get your fellow teams as well as perhaps your conference, league, or your state governing body to enter field hockey information there, so that we can aim for as complete a statistical picture of the country as possible. 

SEASON GOALS
25 Rachel Herbine, Emmaus (Pa.)
25 Jessica Albertson, Gibsonia Pine-Richland (Pa.)
25 Olivia Vonderheide, Louisville Highlands Latin (Ky.)
24 Olivia Petrie, Louisville Highlands Latin (Ky.)
24 Tyler Everslage, Louisville Assumption (Ky.)
24 Katie Clarke, Purcellville Loudoun Valley (Va.)
21 Cece Tomaszewski, Leesburg Loudoun County (Va.)
19 Izzy Morgan, Winnetka New Trier (Ill.)
19 Jacqulin Gransbury, Walton (N.Y.)
18 Anna Finn, Windsor (N.Y.) Central
18 Emily Yazzetti, Shrub Oak Lakeland (N.Y.)
18 Mia Schoenbeck, The Christian Academy of Louisville (Ky.)

SEASON ASSISTS
22 Rachel Herbine, Emmaus (Pa.)
20 Abby Burnett, Emmaus (Pa.)
14 Katie Clarke, Purcellville Loudoun Valley (Va.)
13 Molly Degiulio, Buffalo Nichols School (N.Y.)
13 Gigi Edwards, Frontenac Villa Duchesne (Mo.)
12 Annie Ryan, St. Louis St. Joseph’s Academy (Mo.)
11 Katie Crump, Frontenac Villa Duchesne (Mo.)
11 Erika Culp, West Lawn Wilson (Pa.)
11 Kaia Beaudoin, Fairfax (Va.)
11 Hannah Doyle, Gates Mills Hawken (Ohio)
11 Emma Westerhoff, Gibsonia Pine-Richland (Pa.)
11 Keira Gallagher, Shrub Oak Lakeland (N.Y.)
11 Mia Schoenbeck, The Christian Academy of Louisville (Ky.)

CAREER GOALS
155 Olivia Fraticelli, Toms River (N.J.) North
151 Rachel Herbine, Emmaus (Pa.)
134 Maci Bradford, Delmar (Del.)
110 Lauren Masters, Clinton North Hunterdon (N.J.)
104 Josie Hollamon, Delmar (Del.)
102 Olivia Bent-Cole, Cherry Hill Camden Catholic (N.J.)

CAREER ASSISTS
107 Rachel Herbine, Emmaus (Pa.)
78 Hope Haynes, Houston Kincaid (Tex.)

CONSECUTIVE WINS
101 Delmar (Del.)
52 Emmaus (Pa.)

CONSECUTIVE UNBEATEN
101 Delmar (Del.)
52 Emmaus (Pa.)

ACTIVE COACHING VICTORIES
1025 Susan Butz-Stavin, Emmaus (Pa.)
860 Linda Krieiser, Hummelstown Lower Dauphin (Pa.)
744 Karen Klassner, Kingston Wyoming Seminary (Pa.)
722 Cheryl Poore, Harwich (Mass.), Monomoy (Mass.), and Nauset (Mass.)
712 Eileen Donahue, Watertown (Mass.)
696 Sharon Sarsen, Shrub Oak Lakeland (N.Y)

See anything missing? It’s only the first week and I’m sure there are a lot of missing stats. Feel free to send an email to us at TopOfTheCircle.com. We’ll endeavor to fix it.

Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you next week.

Sept. 22, 2022 — Is Spain having its own NWSL reckoning?

Today, nearly half of what would have been the expected roster of the Spain women’s national soccer team indicated that they wished not to be made available for selection for national-team duty.

This is a Spain team which has been on the rise in Europe the last few years, making the final four of the UEFA championship, losing to eventual champion England. Spain has boffo credentials in the sport, and has developed a first division which has the backing of teams like Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Athletico Madrid.

And yet, somehow, the Spanish federation seems to find ways to shoot itself in the foot when it comes to women’s soccer. The women’s league had a late start this year because of a strike by referees, one which was resolved this month.

But the simmering tensions between the national team and head coach Jorge Vilda have been constant since at least late August. Vilda has been accused of being autocratic in his coaching of the team, and reports have said that individuals have lost confidence in the coach, and that there was a split in the locker room.

The Royal Football Federation of Spain, however, has doubled down with Vilda.

“The RFEF is not going to allow the players to question the continuity of the national coach and his coaching staff, since making those decisions does not fall within their powers,” it said in a statement today. “The Federation will not admit any type of pressure from any player when adopting sports measures. These types of maneuvers are far from exemplary and outside the values ​​of football and sport and are harmful.”

The lengthy statement went on to say this: “”The players who have submitted their resignation will only return to the discipline of the national team in the future if they accept their mistake and ask for forgiveness.”

That, to me, is counterproductive and treats the players like schoolchildren. It is not a good look.

Sept. 21, 2022 — Inside the NHSI, 2022

This weekend, 59 teams will be converging on The Proving Grounds in Conshohocken, Pa. for the third National High School Invitational.

Over the course of the weekend, a record number of games will be contested — 68 in total.

In the past, we’ve done capsule previews of each and every game. But this year, we’re going to whittle it down to one particular key game in each of the 12 match windows. It’s not that the other 56 games aren’t going to be good. I’m sure there will be some gripping contests all over the Grounds, but these are the dozen games that I think will be the most interesting.

Here goes:

3 p.m., Friday, Sept. 23: Winnetka New Trier (Ill.) vs. San Diego Torrey Pines (Calif.): The thing about this game is that both teams are coming in with one tough loss. New Trier lost 3-2 to Frontenac Villa Duchesne (Mo.) at the Gateway Invitational; Torrey Pines lost 3-2 on Sept. 7th against San Diego Canyon Hills (Calif.). These are two of the better teams from out west, and this game deserves your attention

5 p.m., Friday, Sept. 23: Summit Oak Knoll (N.J.) vs. Houston St. John’s (Tex.): Oak Knoll, the New Jersey Non-Public champion, already has a loss on its schedule this year. The Royals are playing a St. John’s team which has not given up a goal in six games this year while scoring 40

7 p.m., Friday, Sept. 23: Voorhees Eastern (N.J.) vs. Mechanicsburg (Pa.) Area: After 23 years in the stratosphere, winning 22 straight state titles on offer and setting a lot of National Federation records, you can’t blame the current Eastern team if it doesn’t play that exact same level of intense and skilled hockey it has exhibited in the past. This matchup against a Mechanicsburg team from one of the nation’s best field hockey conferences give as good an indication as any as to the Vikings’ competitive level

9 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 24: Louisville Assumption (Ky.) vs. Upper Gwynedd Gwynedd-Mercy Academy (Pa.): Gwynedd-Mercy finished second in last year’s PIAA Class A final, but has ramped up its level this year, Assumption is the current holder of the Apple Tournament championship

11 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 24: Severn Archbishop Spalding (Md.) vs. Sacred Heart Greenwich (Conn.): Spalding, after its title-winning IAAM “A” season, is 6-1 this season. Sacred Heart Greenwich is 3-1 after an opening loss to The Hill School

1 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 24: Houston Kinkaid (Tex.) vs. Kingston Wyoming Seminary (Pa.): You’re going to see some of the players on this field at the top levels of Division I next year. Hope Haynes (UNC), Ella Barbacci (UNC) and Emma Watchilla (UVa) are amongst the committed players in this game

3 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 24: Pottstown Hill School (Pa.) vs. Norfolk (Va.) Academy: Both of these schools have had some impressive results thus far. Hill has wins over Sacred Heart Greenwich and Episcopal Academy, while Norfolk Academy beat public-school rivals Cox and First Colonial back-to-back a couple of weeks ago

5 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 24: Ashburn Independence (Va.) vs. Charlotte Myers Park (N.C.): Independence is one of the schools in Loudoun County, Va. who started play in 2016. They have a sophomore of tremendous promise named Sammie Goin. Myers Park is already benefitting from having the U.S. women’s national team practicing in its backyard. The Mustangs play their home games at Bessant Field

7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 24: Summit Oak Knoll (N.J.) vs. Kingston Wyoming Seminary (Pa.): This is one of the best games of the weekend between two championship programs. Oak Knoll has won four straight NJSIAA Non-Public titles and Sem has won four straight PIAA Class A championships

9 a.m., Sunday, Sept. 25: Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (N.Y.) vs. Ann Arbor Skyline (Mich.): Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake comes into this week with a 5-0 record, having beaten the likes of Shenendehowa and Guilderland this season. Skyline, winners of the Michigan High School Field Hockey League Division I championship last year, is 8-0 this season

11 a.m., Sunday, Sept. 25: Cherry Hill Camden Catholic (N.J..) vs. Newtown Square Episcopal Academy (Pa.): Camden Catholic has a senior named Olivia Bent-Cole, who is in the pool of players for the U.S. women’s national team. The Irish are one of the best teams in South Jersey, and they will be going against an Episcopal Academy side which won last year’s PAISAA title, but have found the going tough this season

1 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 25: East Greenwich (R.I.) vs. Summit Kent Place (N.J.): East Greenwich has a skilled, stylish player named Alexandra Mega, who has scored a number of game-winning goals for her side as the team has won three straight RIIL state titles. Kent Place was 18-4 last season — three of its defeats to Oak Knoll. They are a good side and will give East Greenwich a stern test

Sept. 20, 2022 — Top 10 for the week of Sept. 18

Hello, everyone, and welcome back to our weekly Top 10s, which is loosely based upon our preseason Top 10 that we released on social media in late August. As you can tell, there has been a lot of movement from that first back-of-the-envelope listing. But one thing that remains the same are our top two, Delmar (Del.) and Emmaus (Pa.).

Our RightToRightIsRight.com honorary No. 11 Team of the Week is Bates College, a small liberal arts school in Lewiston, Maine. The Bobcats, coached by Dani Kogut, have been on a tear in the New England Small College Athletic Conference, one of the best conferences in Division III. When Bates beat Bowdoin on Sept. 10, it was the first time the Bobcats had won against their CBB rivals since 1984.

1. Delmar (Del.) 4-0
The Wildcats have Seaford (Del.) and Milford (Del.) this week; have outscored their opponents 35-1 thus far with their well-worked attack led by Maci Bradford, U.S. national-teamer Josie Hollamon, and her younger sister Jordyn Hollamon

2. Emmaus (Pa.) 9-0
Hornets have outscored their opposition 103-0 this season; Rachel Herbine and Melea Weber have been leading the offensive juggernaut

3. Pottstown Hill School (Pa.) 4-0
Hill will have Summit Oak Knoll (N.J.) tomorrow before playing Norfolk (Va.) Academy and The Christian Academy of Louisville (Ky.) this weekend at the NHSI

4. Woolwich Kingsway (N.J.) 4-0
Dragons have a pair of major wins in their resume against sitting state champions Summit Oak Knoll (N.J.) and Clinton North Hunterdon (N.J.)

5. Palmyra (Pa.) 4-0
Cougars will have great tests against Hummelstown Lower Dauphin (Pa.) and NHSI games with Garnet Valley (Pa.) and San Diego Torrey Pines (Calif.)

6. Richmond Trinity Episcopal (Va.) 7-1
After a loss to host Chantilly Westfield (Va.) earlier in the season, the Titans beat Norfolk (Va.) Academy, 2-1 last weekend

7. Kingston Wyoming Seminary (Pa.) 4-0-1
Blue Knights beat St. Louis Villa Duchesne (Mo.) and Louisville Sacred Heart (Ky.) this past weekend; Sem will have Houston Kincaid (Tex.) and Summit Oak Knoll (N.J.) at the NHSI

8. Voorhees Eastern (N.J.) 1-0
Vikings are a wildcard here; how do you keep the same level of play having graduated such a talented senior class? We’ll know more after NHSI games against Mechanicsburg (Pa.) and Ann Arbor Skyline (Mich.)

9. San Diego Canyon Hills (Calif.) 9-0
New head coach Kat Keivens is keeping the winning tradition, and will have three games next Saturday to try to win the Canyon Hills Invitational Tournament

10. Northport (N.Y.) 6-0
The Tigers have followed on from their sectional and state championships the last couple of years with some dominating results thus far

11. Bates College 4-1
Over the weekend, beat Williams 1-0; Bobcats have their best NESCAC start since the conference formed in 1999

And bear in mind: Greenwood Village Cherry Creek (Colo.) 6-0, Lewes Cape Henlopen (Del.) 3-0, Watertown (Mass.) 3-0, Summit Oak Knoll (N.J.) 3-1, Shrub Oak Lakeland (N.Y.) 6-0-1, Hummelstown Lower Dauphin (Pa.) 5-1, Hershey (Pa.) 3-1, Norfolk Academy (Va.) 5-1

Sept. 19, 2022 — The journey continues

This morning, I got my sixth chemotherapy injection at the doctor’s office.

It’s been a routine that I’ve gotten used to, going to appointments, getting examinations, drawing blood, and, every few months, getting an injection in my hip.

Only today, I felt something that I had never felt before. As I was getting blood drawn after the chemo injection, I felt a pulse in my left side. It moved from there to the center of my back, then to my right side.

it hurt. I mean, it was noticeable, this pulsating fire. The pain moved up my spine and got to my shoulders.

Now, I’ve been injected with all manner of dyes, vaccines, and other things over my lifetime. But today was the only time I could actually feel the fluid moving through me and reacting with tissue, nerves, and muscles.

It was painful, to the point where I was concerned that I might not be able to drive home.

I let the injection reaction calm down a bit before getting into the car, whereupon I was able to get to the supermarket for a gallon of milk.

After getting home, I had to take a nap. The hormone chilled my body and I had to get a blanket even on this 80-degree day.

It’s been the fight of my life, trying to beat back cancer. I have a hard road ahead, one which involves a radical surgery once the doctors agree. I have a lot of work to do, to dedicate myself to get ready for the procedure which should ostensibly save my life.

On days like this, the fight against cancer is uppermost of mind, as it should be for those of you who are also fighting it.

My advice to you is simple: keep fighting.

Sept. 18, 2022 — Uneasy for the players from last year’s Division I final

This afternoon, the two participants in last year’s Division I championship — Liberty and Northwestern — found themselves in adverse situations in their respective road games. But this is to be expected: make a national championship final, and everyone on next year’s schedule will bring their best game and work every possible tactic in order to win.

Northwestern traveled to Princeton, a team which had a pair of immense results last week, They beat a good Syracuse team 5-1, then knocked off a Rutgers team which had been the No. 1 seed in last year’s tournament by a 4-1 score.

Princeton was able to get a Beth Yeager dragflick goal in the 31st minute, and held onto the lead deep into regulation before a Peyton Halsey deflection on the doorstep tied the game.

The teams headed into overtime and the game ended on an innocuous play. In the 67th minute, Alia Marshall carried the ball up the left wing and sought a scoring opportunity. She flipped the ball off the stick of Princeton back Gabby Andretta and the ball somehow found its way over the shoulder of goalie Robyn Thompson from that tight angle, ending the game.

A few hundred miles south in Harrisonburg, Va., Liberty was playing a non-conference game against in-state foe James Madison. The Flames raced out to a 2-0 lead and were seemingly bossing the game.

But Emily Harrison answered twice for the host Dukes, setting up the game-winner from import Eveline Zwager shortly before the interval.

James Madison, a school which needs as many Ratings Percentage Index points as it can get in order to make it into the NCAA Tournament, was able to hold on for the balance of the second half, even as Liberty pulled its goalie for an 11th field player for the last seven minutes of the contest, winning 3-2.

These sets of results reinforce the notion that not only is nothing easy in NCAA field hockey, but it seems to me as though it is going to take a special effort in order to make the Division I championship game this year.

BULLETIN: Sept. 17, 2022 — An exclusive club grows by one

This afternoon, with a five-goal, three assist effort in a 13-0 win over East Stroudsburg (Pa.) South, Rachel Herbine not only takes the lead nationally in both categories (according to MaxPreps), but has also joined a special group of field hockey players to have scored more than 100 goals and 100 assists in a scholastic field hockey career.

She’s the 13th known field hockey player ever to reach triple digits in goals and assists. Oddly enough, she’s the third player in the history of Emmaus (Pa.) to achieve this feat, alongside alumnae Annika Herbine and Meredith Sholder.

She’s also the second player in her own family, following on with her sister. just like what happened a few years ago with Cami Crook and her brother Lucas hitting the 100-100 mark with Somerset-Berkeley Regional (Mass.).

G-ANameSchoolSTYR
149-135*Chantae MillerWilliamsville NorthNY2003-2008
126-117Chantae MillerWilliamsville NorthNY2005-2008
114-108Alyssa ParkerGlenelgMD2008-2011
200-201Haley SchleicherVirginia Beach First ColonialVA2012-2015
217-134Meredith SholderEmmausPA2013-2016
104-104Leah CrouseVirginia Beach Frank W. CoxVA2014-2017
106-107Gabby AndrettaSummit Oak KnollNJ2014-2017
351-136Mackenzie AllessieMount Joy DonegalPA2015-2018
141-103Emma DeberdineMillersville Penn ManorPA2015-2018
142-122Lucas CrookSomerset-Berkley RegionalMA2016-2019
141-110Annika HerbineEmmausPA2017-2020
124-153Cami CrookSomerset-Berkley RegionalMA2017-2021
140-126Natali FosterElverson Twin ValleyPA2018-2021
150-103Rachel HerbineEmmausPA2019-present
* six-year varsity career

Sept. 17, 2022 — Woolwich Kingsway (N.J.) 3, Clinton North Hunterdon (N.J.) 1

WOOLWICH TWP, N.J. — The 2022 field hockey season is the first that the New Jersey Interscholastic Athletic Association will not have a postseason Tournament of Champions.

That being said, the array of teams contending for the five available state titles are a diverse lot. Two such teams met this afternoon, as Woolwich Kingsway (N.J.) defeated Clinton North Hunterdon (N.J.) 3-1.

Kingsway is a South Jersey field hockey team, but does not have the same kind of Constance Applebee-tinged history as some of its neighbor teams, as the school opened in the early 1960s. But the Dragons have pulled themselves into the upper echelon of teams from the eight-county region. Part of it was because of progress made when Dana Ramsden was a two-time Gloucester County Player of the Year. One of the measures of that progress came in 2005, when Kingsway tied Voorhees Eastern (N.J.).

Now Dana Ott, the Kingsway head coach is not only looking to match that level of greatness, but to exceed it. In her fifth year at the helm, she has assembled a Murderers’ Row of opponents, and has added today’s win over state Group III champion North Hunterdon to last week’s win at Non-Public champion Summit Oak Knoll.

“Anything to strengthen our program is what our goal was coming in,” Ott said. “In everything that we do, we are out to win a state championship. This has been brewing for a while, and this year is the first time we can say that every player is a threat.”

Kingsway won yesterday’s game on sheer discipline. The team’s press was outstanding, with great spacing and defense by all three lines of the Dragons’ formation, cutting off space and passing angles. On the day, they held North Hunterdon to precious little in the way of attack chances. The Lions only had two shots on goal.

“Every layer is a strength,” Ott says. “If it wasn’t for our forwards doing what they needed to do, then our mids wouldn’t be as successful. And the same can be said of our backs.”

North, despite losing its second game of the week, is taking its opportunity to look forward. The Lions, like their opponents, will take part in next weekend’s National High School Invitational in Conshohocken, Pa.

“Part of our culture is that we don’t hang our heads, and we don’t complain,” said NH head coach Geoffrey Chrisman. “We just deal what we have to deal with; we talk about ‘the next three minutes’ all the time. We can’t go back; we just have to get ready for the next three minutes.”

North Hunterdon has a superb attacking midfielder in Lauren Masters, who was one of a baker’s dozen of players to score more than 50 goals last year. But this game featured the Lions’ defense, led by fullback Sarah Bisson and defensive midfielder Sara Roberts. They along with Molly Claus, Brooke Cahill, and Caroline Mueller, were strong all day with a number of remarkable takeaways and defensive plays on the day. Bisson, who had a key defensive save in last year’s state final against Moorestown, had two more stops on the goal line against Kingsway.

“They are a solid group that trusts each other,” Chrisman said. “That helps our goalies, who are all sophomores. We only gave up goals on strokes and corners, so we played a good defensive game. That was some of the best defensive I’ve seen in the past few years, and it will provide a springboard for us going forward.”

North Hunterdon (3-2) 0 0 0 1 — 1
Kingsway (4-0) 0 1 1 1 — 3

K: Sabrina McGroarty, ps, 23rd minute
K: Ella Stephenson (Isabella Sanchez), pc, 32nd
K: Stephenson, ps, 52nd
NH: Kendall Varty (Lauren Masters), fg, 55th
Shots — NH: 2; K: 11. Saves — NH: Zoey Zahorchak 6, defensive 2; K: Soren Kipphut 1.

FULL TIME That’s all for today; good night, good hockey

FULL TIME Next week, both teams will be participating in the National High School Invitational. North Hunterdon takes on San Marcos (Calif.) on Friday at 3 p.m., and Glenelg (Md.) Saturday at 3 p.m. Kingsway’s opponents are Malvern Villa Maria (Pa.) Friday at 5 p.m., and Norfolk (Va.) Academy Sunday at 11 a.m.

FULL TIME The final whistle sounds with Kingsway winning 3-1. Interesting bit here: it is Kingsway’s second win over a sitting NJ state champion this week

58:10 NHHS PC Long shot hits the tire on the outside of the cage

54:46 NHHS GOAL The Lions pull one back through the efforts of Kendall Varty, but Kingsway still leads 3-1

51:52 KHS PS Stephenson pings the inner back post; fine stroke! Kingsway leads 3-0

51:30 KHS PC A long shot hits a North defender behind the goalie and a stroke is duly called

48:20 NHHS GREEN Lions penalized for a 5-yard encroachment

47:50 Kingsway forward Karlie Mertz attacks a wedge of space on the right wing but runs out of room

45:00 The fourth quarter is on

END 3rd The siren ends the third term with Kingsway leading 2-0

41:00 Masters comes in from the left wing, aims a backhander that just misses the top corner

37:30 KHS PC Masters interposed herself in a three-way passing play; 16y free-out is the result

36:56 KHS PC Long angled shot put on cage but saved off the line by senior Sarah Bisson!

36:30 KHS PC Masters sniffs out the corner but a foot committed by North; will re-rack

33:59 Timeout, North Hunterdon

31:30 KHS PC A deflected shot finds its way over the goal line! Ella Stephenson is credited with the goal that stakes Kingsway to a 2-0 lead

30:00 The third quarter is under way

HALFTIME The Lion defenders have been resilient and smart in cutting out Dragon offensive chances; can this continue in the second half?

HALFTIME The stars are out to play today on the offensive end, as Sanchez and Masters have each threatened the goal. But give a call to North Hunterdon’s backliners, who have been outstanding thus far

END HALF Going to the break, Kingsway has a 1-0 lead

26:30 Masters with a free hit in a promising position; the angled pass somehow eludes two open teammates and goes over the end line for a 16y free-out

22:35 KHS GOAL Sabrina McGroarty pings the stroke and Kingsway leads 1-0

22:35 Kingsway runs a 2-on-1 and beats the goalie; a defender falls on the ball and a stroke is called

22:00 Bella Sanchez breaks in on the left wing for Kingway. She aims a shot but the goalie is equal

17:00 KHS PC Hi-lo to the left wing is read and cleared by the North Hunterdon defense, who has been playing very well today

15:00 The second term is under way

END 1ST The sides are scoreless at the siren

12:30 Kingsway works it to the second-goal area for a pass to the stroke mark but the North Hunterdon defense sniffs out the play and clears

9:30 KHS PC Option-right whistled down for danger

8:30 KHS PC Option-right is whiffed

7:30 KHS PC Option-left is blocked over the end line for a 23m free-in

5:06 Masters thunders into the circle and blasts her shot attempt wide of the cage

0:45 KHS PC Shot too high coming in

0:00 The game is on

PREGAME North Hunterdon is in the all-green with gold trim and numbers; Kingsway is in the white with black kilts and red numerals

PREGAME The teams are warming up under bright blue skies, temperatures around 75 degrees

PREGAME A common opponent for these two sides is The Lawrenceville (N.J.) School. Kingsway beat Lawrenceville 5-0 and North came out a 1-0 victor

PREGAME A huge key for both these teams is their ability to focus on the here and now. Both teams would not be blamed for looking forward to their participation in next weekend’s National High School Invitational, but their coaches will have them focus on the task at hand

PREGAME There have been some significant results on both sides of the ledger, ones which jumble up the rankings like a game of Boggle. This week, the Lions lost to Basking Ridge Ridge (N.J.). Also in the last week, Kingsway went up north and beat Non-Public champion Summit Oak Knoll (N.J.)

PREGAME Kingsway, coached by Dana Ott, could be the Group IV team that unseats Eastern in the South Jersey ranks this season. The Dragons are led by forward Isabella Sanchez

PREGAME North is the defending state Group III champions. It is a team that truly found itself last year, winning the treble (county tournament, sectional, and state championship) thanks to Geoffrey Chrisman’s coaching. The Lions are led by senior Lauren Masters, a forward with tremendous skills

PREGAME Kingsway is 3-0 this season; North Hunterdon is 3-1

PREGAME Hello, and welcome to Barchuk Field for this intersectional field hockey game between Clinton North Hunterdon (N.J.) and Woolwich Kingsway (N.J.)

Sept. 16, 2022 — Another tournament, with champions

Today at high noon, Kingston Wyoming Seminary (Pa.), the current PIAA Class A champion, takes on St. Louis Villa Duchesne (Mo.), the current MWAA champion, in a series of intersectional matches being held at Louisville Sacred Heart (Ky.).

This is the second weekend in a row that a number of state champions have gotten together for competition, and we are bound to see more great action. Yesterday, Heart managed to hold onto a 1-0 lead that it earned against Villa Duchesne even as the Midwest champs kept hammering at the dam in the second half.

Tomorrow, Sacred Heart takes on Wyoming Seminary at 3 p.m., but that’s not even closing out the weekend of action in Louisville. That’s because Sacred Heart will take on Louisville Assumption (Ky.) at 5 p.m. Sunday evening in a regular-season contest.

This is the first of three weekends on the road for Wyoming Seminary, our preseason No. 1 team. They have the National High School Invitational next week, then travel to Voorhees Eastern (N.J.) for a pair of games two weeks after that.

You have to give it to Sem, Heart, and Villa; they seek out great competition no matter where it is, and they have tremendous hockey tradition and history within these programs dating back through the 20th Century.