RADNOR, PA – Another unblemished Catholic League regular season is in the books for the Lady Patriots of Archbishop Carroll. Tuesday afternoon, Carroll hosted Cardinal O’Hara in what would be the final league game for both teams before PCL playoffs begin next Monday.
While O’Hara was the first to strike early off a goal from sophomore Rachel Familetti, Carroll regained control to cruise to an 18-5 victory.
“Our game plan was to win the 50/50 balls and win the draws. We knew that was going to be the difference, we knew they (O’Hara) were going to play aggressive and we had to limit their opportunities as much as possible,” said Carroll senior Amber Germer.
Germer, who will be playing at George Washington University next season, led the Patriot’s offensive attack with five goals.
The explosive senior scored her team’s first three goals within the first five minutes of the game to put her team up 3-1 at the 19 minute mark. Senior Madison Henry also scored for the Patriots, along with another added goal from Germer, to give Carroll a 5-1 cushion before O’Hara junior Sara Grassi found the back of the net for the Lions.
The Patriots scored five more times before the halftime whistle off goals from freshman Kiley Mottice, sophomores Karli Dougherty (2) and Nicole Pawelec and Henry. O’Hara freshman Mia Scarduzio, junior Julia Ferraiolo and Familetti also scored additional goals for the Lions in the first half. Despite leading 10-5 at the half, Carroll senior Keri Daly said that during their halftime huddle the Patriots agreed that they needed to tighten up on both sides of the field.
“I think we just knew we had to talk to each other more. It seemed a little quiet in the first half. On offense, we knew we had to keep our composure, and know that if we got a stop on defense that we had to get a goal at the other end,” said Daly, who will be playing field hockey at St. Joseph’s University next year.
“In the first half we were hustling, but in the second half we really made sure to get the 50/50 balls and, on our shots, we really took a better shot selection and finished our goals,” said Germer.
During the second half, Carroll displayed just why they are 10-0 in regular season PCL play. The Lady Patriots scored eight unanswered goals in order to head into the PCL playoffs as the No. 1 seed. Seniors Grace Ewing, Germer and Henry, junior Kellie Ann Matey (3) and Mottice all aided second half goals in Carroll’s 18-5 victory.
Germer was quick to credit her team’s opponent for putting up a tough end of season fight.
“They (O’Hara) are a good team, they are a tough team and we definitely can’t take anything for granted,” said Germer. “We have to stay tough and stay motivated. We are ready to see them again but it was a really fun game to play.”
Coming into the game, Cardinal O’Hara (9-1 PCL) also garnered a perfect league record. Junior attack Sara Grassi was pleased that her teammates kept their composure while playing one of their hardest opponents.
“I think we did a pretty good job on the attack, just settling the ball. Carroll is our toughest competitor. We haven’t beat them in 19 years so we knew going into it that it was going to be a really tough game and that we are the underdogs,” said Grassi. “So, I think we stayed calm and held the ball. One thing that we need to work on is our defense. With what we have and what we were playing up against, I think we did pretty okay.”
Senior teammate Emily Raech also noted that O’Hara’s underdog mentality has been lifting the team to have fun and leave their all on the field.
“Our game plan was to come out here really strong and like Sara (Grassi) said we are the underdogs, so we really didn’t have anything to lose coming into this game,” said Raech, who will be playing lacrosse at Old Dominion next year. “It was really just team spirit and I think we need to work on our confidence and believing in each other. There are a lot of freshmen on the field, we are not upper-classmen heavy like we were last year. I think we just need to trust everyone and it will go smoothly next time.”
As far as their second meeting against Carroll and other tough opponents in the looming PCL playoffs, O’Hara is prepared and ready to compete for the plaque.
“You can expect us to come out hungrier,” said Raech. “Now we know what we have to work on and we did have a lot of stuff in our back pocket so we are excited.”
“I think this really prepared us for our upcoming games, because now we know our competition and what we are going to have to do to win,” said O’Hara freshman Anastasia Ciminera.
Looking Ahead: the first round of the 2019 PCL girls’ lacrosse playoffs will kick-off on Monday May, 13. The semifinals will take place on Wednesday, May 15 and the championship will be held on Monday, May 20 at Neumann University.