MADISON, NJ – Madison field hockey, No. 6 in the NJ.com Top 20, may have felt a touch of deja vu on Saturday after a 4-3 loss against No. 10 Haddonfield in the NJSIAA/Investors Bank Group 1 championship at Bordentown High School.
Up by two near the end of the first half, the Lady Dodgers had a chance at redemption after losing 2-1 to Haddonfield in last year’s championship, but were unable to hold onto the lead.
Forwards Liz Romano and Chase Cmaylo were responsible for two Madison goals in the first half as Madison got in front 2-0, but Haddonfield’s Bridget McCormick was quick to respond with a successful shot of her own with just over 19 seconds to go before halftime.
Trailing 2-1, McCormick put her team in the lead with two more shots past Dodger goalie Nicole Ducey. Sophie Popp scored the final point for Haddonfield, and Madison played hard to take back the game.
Another goal from Romano, this time unassisted, narrowed the Dodger deficit with 2:47 left in the game, but Madison could not recover.
“It was a great field hockey game, we just ended up on the wrong end,” said Madison coach Ann Marie Davies. “I don’t think we played the game we were capable of playing. They brought their A-plus-plus game, and we got caught up in a couple of situations we thought we were going to counter and we didn’t.”
Saturday’s loss was Madison’s third Group championship defeat in the past four seasons. The team won its last Group title in 2015 with a 5-0 victory over Wall High School.
Davies said she was proud of her team for how far it had come, winning titles in the Morris County Tournament, the NJAC-Liberty and the NJSIAA North 2, Group 1 State Sectional this year.
“It’s tough to end your season like this because it’s over, you’re out of the tournament, but we took away that we learned how to earned something,” she said. “Kids today, to me, it’s a world of entitlement. We learned how to be accountable. I think that’s the biggest victory you can take away from the season.”