No. 5 Roland Park stands up to No. 3 Notre Dame Prep, 8-6

Reds ride solid defense in 2nd-half stretch to win

Girls lacrosse

April 02, 2003|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

Facing the multi-layered Notre Dame Prep offense, Roland Park knew smart defense could make the difference in yesterday's showdown between the two ranked Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference girls lacrosse teams.

No. 5 Roland Park staged a critical defensive stand midway through the second half, shutting down the No. 3 Blazers for nearly six minutes en route to an 8-6 victory at Roland Park (3-0 overall and conference).

With the score tied at 6 and about 15 minutes to go, Reds defenders Molly Frew, Hannah Whitman, Michele Slotke, Cara Hitchner, Meg Ferguson and Caroline Grumbine clamped down as NDP attacked for six minutes without success.

After the Blazers' Becky Lillemoe nailed a shot off the pipe and the Reds recovered the ground ball, Ferguson raced about two-thirds of the field and hit a high corner for what turned out to be the game-winning goal, at 7-6, with 8:50 left.

"We really improved our slides, seeing both ball and girl," Frew said. "We knew they had a lot of threats offensively, so we knew everyone had to slide and we did a good job of keeping calm and not rushing things."

On the other hand, the Blazers (3-1) were not so patient through that stretch. However, Coco Stanwick, who scored a couple of first-half goals, fired a shot toward a low corner that carried wide with 9:48 to go.

"They were marking up tight and we were forcing the ball," said Blazers junior Jamie Hanssen. "We were really anxious and nervous, and we thought we needed to score right away when we really should have been more patient."

After Ferguson's third goal of the game, the Reds won the next draw and attacked for most of the next six minutes. The Blazers got three nice saves from keeper Caitlin Formby, but they turned the ball over twice in the Reds' end of the field.

That helped Katie Atkins add a goal with 2:45 to go, converting a pass from Alex Nolan.

Behind the goal on a restart, Atkins realized that her defender, Molly Kane, had also come behind the goal.

"I took advantage of the opportunity, because I had her behind me and I just went around," said Atkins, who slipped the ball in the low near corner. "Our attack got really patient. Before, we were just running through double teams, but we had to recognize the slide and that someone was open."

Reds goalie Ashley Thompson (eight saves) preserved the win by stopping two shots in the final 1:26.

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