Suffolk field hockey wins across the river

Published 9:08 pm Wednesday, October 8, 2014

New precedents have been set this year when Suffolk’s public school field hockey teams have faced each other, but when they faced their conference mates from across the James River on Tuesday, it seemed like 2013 all over again.

King’s Fork, Lakeland and Nansemond River high schools outscored Phoebus, Heritage and Denbigh high schools 17-0 to continue the dominance they displayed last year.

Because of her team’s skill level advantage, Lady Bulldogs coach Courtney Van der Linden did not necessarily think its 8-0 road win over the Lady Phantoms represented a really well-played game. Nevertheless, she said King’s Fork did work to resolve some of its shortcomings.

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“It’s still not where I want to be, but it’s definitely progress,” she said. “We’re moving in the right direction.”

The Lady Bulldogs have been riddled with sickness and injuries, opening the door for players like sophomores Selina Davis and Nia Vargas to step up.

“They’ve been given a lot more opportunities, and they’ve definitely risen to the occasion,” Van der Linden said.

Davis recorded a hat trick on Tuesday, while Vargas scored twice and had three assists. Senior Randi Fiel also scored twice, and a junior varsity player pulled up for the game, sophomore Jadice Baker, scored once.

Senior Rachel Gist provided assists on four different goals.

The Lady Cavaliers traveled to Heritage and won 7-0.

“I felt that they played really good, especially coming off the Grassfield (High School) game,” Lakeland coach Cortney Parker said, referring to a frustrating 1-0 loss the week prior. “We didn’t backtrack, which is what we’ve been focusing on.”

She said her team’s conditioning and skill level is what made the difference against the Lady Hurricanes.

Junior Taylor Roten led Lakeland with three goals. Starting with the Grassfield game, Parker moved Roten to center forward and said, “She’s been doing really well.”

Junior Stasha Waterfield scored twice, and sophomores Kendall Lewis and Lexis Munford each scored once.

Junior Shannon Leonard had two assists, junior Chaunsa Saunders had one and Waterfield had one.

Lakeland had 11 penalty corners, while Heritage had none.

The Lady Warriors produced a much narrower win in their contest than their Suffolk counterparts, but it was a win nonetheless, 2-0 over Denbigh.

NR coach Ali Mowry was pleased to get the victory but still saw mistakes from her players that she thought were beneath their skill level.

The Lady Patriots also seem to be the strongest Peninsula team in the conference.

“It wasn’t easy getting the ball down the field, but I would say we controlled the game still,” Mowry said.

This control was starkly illustrated in the tally of offensive penalty corners — Denbigh had four and Nansemond River had 19.

“We just weren’t able to finish, really, in the circle,” Mowry said.

Two girls that did manage to do so were junior Jaclyn Mounie, who was unassisted, and freshman Ashlyn Rogers, who was assisted by junior Ashley Hiltabrand. The goals came about four minutes apart in the first half.

Today, Nansemond River (8-3, 3-0) visits Grafton High School and King’s Fork (7-4, 2-1) hosts Smithfield High School, while Lakeland (5-8, 1-2) next returns to action on Tuesday, hosting Denbigh.