St. Paul's ties Spalding, 2-2, clinches IAAM A top seed

Field hockey

October 23, 2003|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

Tie games usually leave both sides feeling ambivalent, but yesterday's 2-2 tie between the No. 3 Archbishop Spalding and No. 4 St. Paul's field hockey teams left the St. Paul's players feeling jubilant.

For a change, a tie had positive consequences as visiting St. Paul's clinched the regular-season championship and the top seed in the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference tournament, which begins tomorrow.

A win would have given Spalding the top spot, but the tie meant the Gators (12-1-2 overall, 10-1-1 conference) edged the Cavaliers (13-0-3, 9-0-3) by a single point.

To Gators coach Annie Morse, whose team tied Roland Park for the tournament title last season, finishing on top in the regular season was particularly rewarding.

"You've got to work hard, not just for 10 days but for an entire season, and you have to be consistent," said Morse. "Whereas in the tournament, you have good days and bad days, and it really is just those three or four games."

While the Gators celebrated their regular-season title, the Cavaliers weren't all that disappointed. After all, they have an undefeated season going, and they came from two goals down yesterday to keep it that way.

Katie Latonick scored twice in the final 17:03 to rally the Cavaliers, first on a cross from Erin Kelly and then on a similar cross from her twin, Meghan.

"It was basically the same shot," said Latonick, who was on the right post when the crosses came from the left side. "They were perfect crosses. They came right to the post, and that made it easy for me."

The Cavaliers' offense needed a little while to recover from losing top scorer Caitlin Swift, who took a crack from a stick on the top of one hand early on and did not return to the game.

The Gators, who came in riding a 10-game winning streak, got the first goal, as Christina Boarman scored four minutes into play. The sophomore showed off her outstanding stick skills in taking a corner pass from Caitlin Sloane, dodging defender Ashley Paschall and nailing her shot.

Eight minutes into the second half, Boarman got another shot off a corner that was saved by Marian Cassilly, but Boarman sent the rebound back in, and Sarah Seats finished it off.

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