Fallston's Danielle McDiarmid gets the loose ball during… (Matt Button | Aegis staff,…)
Edgewood High School - Thursday's UCBAC field hockey title matchup between Fallston and Rising Sun turned out to be a tale of two halves.
After a lackluster opening period, both teams exploded for a combined four goals in the second half, and when the final whistle sounded, it was the Chesapeake (upper) Division champion Cougars that came out on top of their Cecil County opponents with a 3-1 victory.
With the win, Fallston secured its fifth UCBAC field hockey crown. The Cougars won the conference title back to back in 2005 and 2006, then, after narrowly losing the upper division race to Rising Sun in 2007, came back with two more championship game victories in 2008 and 2009.
The Cougars, who were edged out of last year's title contest when Patterson Mill beat them in the Chesapeake standings by one game, locked down the upper division's top spot this season with a perfect 6-0 record. Rising Sun earned its spot in the championship game by winning the Susquehanna (lower) Division with a 6-0-1 mark.
In Thursday's final, after a first half in which neither team was able to find the opposing net, Fallston got things going eight minutes into the second frame, when Sam Carter collected a ball after a wild scramble in front of the Rising Sun goal, then calmly blasted a shot into the low right-hand side net, making the score 1-0.
A little less than four minutes later, Carter struck again, putting away her second goal of the contest in almost the same circumstances as the first, knocking a shot into the Rising Sun goal from five yards out to give the Cougars a two-tally cushion.
Rising Sun cut the Fallston lead in half two minutes after Carter's second goal, scoring on a breakaway.
With a little less than 13 minutes remaining in the game, the Cougars' got their final goal from Danielle McDiarmid, who knocked in a backhand shot from three yards out to cap scoring for the evening.