By BRIAN JENNINGS
It’s not like the Lady Knight field hockey team is struggling against everyone they play. They’ve had their fair share of opportunities, yet the team only garners three wins on the season and needs four games to qualify for the Class L tournament with eight games remaining in the regular season.
“The other day, one of the referees told me that we could definitely be a danger in the tournament because our record is not going to reflect our skill level,” said Southington coach Erin Luddy. “So, the skills are there, and we’ve had the opportunities.”
Luddy wants nothing more than to see her girls succeed and enjoy the remainder of the season going forward. Succeeding right now would be making the state tournament, and Luddy said that those four wins are easily obtainable because the team is playing well and getting better with each game.
“A lot of times in the past, we’ve gotten one goal up and liked to play prevent defense,” the coach said. “But what we’ve been doing a lot more of this year is staying aggressive and continually going after the goal, which is why we’ve had multi-goal games.”
One area of the field the team has been working a lot on lately are dodges and keeping the ball close.
“It’s something that we’ve worked into every-day practice now, and you’re starting to see them take advantage of that and use that more in games,” said Luddy. “They see how effective they are when they’re able to do more than just one change in a game, so they keep trying and get better at it.”
Molly Dobratz and Sydney Rice are currently out of the starting lineup with injuries.
The Knights will be back on the turf next week when they travel to Conard (4-2-2) for their lone game of the week on Tuesday, Oct. 10. Southington is currently 3-5.
Loss vs. Hall
OCT. 3—The Knights suffered their fourth shutout of the season after being blanked, 3-0, by Hall at home on Tuesday.
The Warriors scored their first goal midway through the first half, and capped off the victory with a pair of scores late in the second half. The Knights took 13 shots on goal and five penalty corners, limited to just three shots on goal in the sec ond half. Maddie Belfonti saved 13 shots in the cage.
Win at Wethersfield
OCT. 6—They mustered only five shots on goal Friday, but the Knights made the most of them to earn their first road win and second shutout of the season by blanking divisional Wethersfield, 3-0.
Jenna Sheehan notched Southington’s first goal midway through the first half on an assist from Emma Doran and Julia Jackman. Anna Laone took the ball into the circle herself less than five minutes into the second half and extended Southington’s lead. A little over a minute later, Doran and Jackman teamed again to assist Sheehan with her second goal of the game. Belfonti saved eight shots in the cage.
Luddy was not present for the game, due to personal commitments.
For this week’s box scores, click here: (southingtonobserver.com/2017/10/10/weekly-scoreboard-for-the-oct-13-edition). To contact sports writer Brian Jennings, email him at BJennings@SouthingtonObserver.com.