Lady Warriors cage Tigers

Published 9:40 pm Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The Nansemond River High School field hockey team started its 2015 season with a shutout victory.

The Lady Warriors traveled to Chesapeake on Monday and defeated Oscar Smith High School 6-0.

NR coach Ali Mowry had not been pleased with her team’s play during its first week of preseason scrimmages, but on Monday, “I thought the girls really turned it around,” she said.

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“Our passing was a lot better, just the movement,” Mowry added, noting her team worked the ball up the field and kept the pressure on the Lady Tigers’ defense for the majority of the game, registering 13 offensive penalty corners.

Oscar Smith managed to achieve only a single penalty corner, and it came in the second half when the Lady Tigers were already down by several goals.

“And that was pretty much their only penetration in the circle,” Mowry said.

Lady Warriors sophomore Ashlyn Rogers scored less than two minutes into the game off an assist by freshman Sarah Rhiel.

With 16:25 to go in the first half, Rhiel assisted the next goal, which came off the stick of senior Jaclyn Mounie.

Senior Ashley Hiltabrand put in a goal, unassisted, with 11:04 to go.

Nansemond River was up 3-0 at halftime, and Mowry had few issues with her team’s play.

Hiltabrand struck again in the second half, assisted by senior Cali Valdivieso, and then Mounie provided an assist to Rhiel, who made it 5-0.

Valdivieso scored the final goal of the game, unassisted.

“I definitely think we had a little bit better structure on the field,” Mowry said, explaining what led to her team’s win. And that structure was paired with good passing. “It seemed like everybody played unselfishly.”

Mowry had not been sure of where to play the versatile Hiltabrand, but she ended up putting her in the midfield.

“I thought she took control,” the coach said, noting Hiltabrand facilitated offense and took shots when she needed to.

Mowry also highlighted Rhiel as a standout.

Nansemond River (1-0) hosts Deep Creek High School on Wednesday.