Sep 09, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Everyone associated with the Liverpool field hockey team knows how difficult it will be to match what happened one season ago.
In 2012, after a long and storied history and plenty of Section III titles, the Warriors made it all the way to the state Class A championship match for the first time. And while Liverpool lost that title game 3-0 to Sachem East, it didn’t detract from the remarkable effort just to get that far.
Now head coach Kim Dominick faces 2013 without a remarkable core of eight graduated seniors that included Emma Lamison, Emily Burns, Audra Adams, Corinna Castiglia, Kristin Hinkey and Jen Ryan, though goalie Megan Evangelista leads the returning cast.
That difficult for Liverpool was evident in last Tuesday’s season opener at Holland Patent, as it could only manage a 2-2 tie with the Golden Knights.
In each half, senior forward Paige Howard scored for the Warriors, and in each half HP’s Alyssa Curtis offered a response, proving that more than any other part of the game, it’s the defense that Liverpool needs to work on the most.
And they would stay tied through the overtime periods as Evangelista earned six saves, one less than Golden Knights counterpart Leanna Newland.
And those defensive struggles were exposed again in Thursday’s home opener against Camden, where a late flurry left the Warriors on the wrong end of a 4-3 defeat to the Blue Devils.
They were tied, 1-1, at halftime, and Liverpool did produce on its attack as Shelby Peck, Morgan Thomas and Gabriella Pascarella each took turns earning goals and Kayla Crosby added an assist.
However, Camden kept matching, and topping, what the Warriors could do, largely thanks to Kendra Walker, who put together a three-goal hat trick off passes from Sid McGowan, who had three assists. Liz Link added one goal and one assist.
Another tough defeat came on Saturday night at LHS Stadium, when Fayetteville-Manlius rallied past the Warriors 2-1.
For a half, Liverpool had its defense in good form, and it had grabbed a 1-0 lead on Kylie Tucker’s goal, assisted by Crosby. But the Hornets still rallied with second-half tallies from Olivia Tejan and Erika Stube, and despite all kinds of Warrrior chances, it could get nothing else past F-M goalie Julie Hockenburger, who made 12 saves.
Cicero-North Syracuse, meanwhile, is primed to challenge Liverpool again after dropping last year’s sectional final to the Warriors in a 1-0 verdict.
League play for the Northstars (who have its first regular-season encounter with Liverpool on Sept. 17) began last Tuesday night with an impressive 3-0 shutout of Baldwinsville, where it didn’t allow the Bees to take a single shot.
Meanwhile, C-NS took 14 shots, leading to goals from Maggie Kennedy, McKayla Roberts and Elise Towers. Kennedy and Megan Caveny earned one assist apiece.
Back on Aug. 31, the Northstars opened at home against Vestal, and showed plenty of offensive spark against the Section IV visitors, beating the Golden Bears 3-1.
To grab a 2-0 lead, C-NS landed two goals 28 seconds apart. Both of them were scored by Towers, as her shot found the net eight minutes into the game and, before Vestal could recover, Towers took a pass from Kennedy and scored again.
Even after the Golden Bears cut the deficit to 2-1 early in the second half, C-NS kept cool, and Caveny restored the margin with her first goal of the season. From there, a stout Northstars defense, anchored by Hannah White (eight saves), protected that lead.
From here, the Northstars play a trio of non-league games this week, highlighted by Monday’s home test against reigning Class C champion Cazenovia and a Wednesday match-up with defending Class B champion East Syracuse-Minoa. Liverpool would also face ESM, on Friday, after a Monday trip to Weedsport.