Key breaks Pocomoke hex to take title, 1-0 Eagles end three years of frustration with win 1A field hockey

November 14, 1993|By Bill Free | Bill Free,Staff Writer

Do not go into Eagle territory.

That was the law of the land yesterday for the Francis Scott Key field hockey team that made a defensive stand to rival all defensive stands on the way to a 1-0 victory over Pocomoke in the state Class 1A championship game at Goucher College.

The win gave the Eagles their fifth state 1A title, moving them into an elite group of three state schools that have won five or more championships in the 19-year history of the tournament.

Severna Park leads with seven, Middletown has won six titles and Key is next with five.

Key also ended a three-year jinx that Pocomoke has held over the Uniontown school. The Warriors defeated the Eagles in the 1A semifinals the past three seasons.

The end to the Pocomoke mastery touched off numerous celebrations for the Key players.

Key junior forward Jessica Sutherland, who sent the ball to Holly Talbert for the only goal of the game, said she would top off the day with a shopping trip with her mother.

Other Eagles players said they were too jubilant to think about what they would do to celebrate.

"It hasn't hit me yet," said senior Becky Tregoning who was brilliant throughout the second half as she hustled all over the field to halt promising Pocomoke fast breaks.

"I really wanted this one because we have been losing to #F Pocomoke since I was a freshman."

The top-seeded Eagles (13-1-2) struck quickly for a goal just 2:48 into the game on a fast break that was started by sophomore Stacey Greene who got the ball to Sutherland who gave it to Talbert in front of the cage for the score.

Then Key spent more than 57 minutes rejecting every Pocomoke scoring threat.

Junior Key goalkeeper Missy Muller gave one of her vintage performances, kicking away three straight Pocomoke shots 10 minutes into the second half.

"I can really get into it when they send a lot of shots in a row at me," said Muller. "That is better than when I only see one shot in several minutes."

Muller had to come up big yesterday because Pocomoke took the high-scoring Greene (12 goals) out of the offense by collapsing three players on her in the offensive zone.

"They were pushing me a lot and had three people on me," said Greene. "That's why I had to pass the pass the ball to Jessica and Holly a lot today."

However, Key coach Mindi Wagner praised Greene for her overall play.

"Stacey played well. She cut off No. 10 [link Jodi Byrd] a lot," said Wagner who gets a state title in just her second year of coaching at the age of 24. "All our girls were excellent. They did some tremendous things on defense, containing Pocomoke. This obviously my greatest coaching victory."

The third-seeded Warriors (13-3) put the ball in the cage once yesterday with 17 minutes left in the game but it was disallowed by a dangerous hit.

Pocomoke coach Susan Pusey felt the Warriors deserved a better fate on the call that negated a goal by Carla Purdy.

"I didn't agree with it," said Pusey. "But there's nothing I can do about it now. There are so many judgment calls in field hockey. The main reason we lost is that we didn't pass as well as we normally do."

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