CORTLANDT MANOR, N.Y.— Lakeland’s field hockey squad finished its regular season unbeaten at 16-0 when it defeated sister school, host Walter Panas, 9-0, on Oct. 19.
“To finish the regular season perfectly was a great triumph, especially because it’s my last year as a member of the team,” Lakeland senior captain Julia Papanicolaou said. “To end it perfectly with no regrets is a great feeling.”
The Hornets will go into the upcoming postseason winners of eight straight state titles in Class B (2009-2016), in addition to winning three non-consecutive state titles in Class A (’06, ’03, ’90).
Lakeland’s last postseason loss was to Putnam Valley in the Section 1 Class B title game on Nov. 1, 2008, with the Tigers winning 3-2.
The Hornets took care of their business at Panas thanks in large part to the efforts of Papanicolaou (1G, 3A), Kelsey McCrudden (2G), Caroline Cahill (2G), Emma Halderman (1G, 1A), Emily Kness (1G), Jenna McCrudden (1G), Sarah Bussell (1G) and Frankie Fava (1A).
“We played so well because we worked the ball and trusted our teammates,” Papanicolaou said. “In the second half we stretched the field and passed more which really helped us get those nine goals.”
Cassie Halpin, Kellie Smith and Miranda Lopes all saw time in goal, with Smith registering a save.
Lakeland won at Horace Greeley 7-1 on Oct. 16, jumping out to a 3-1 halftime lead.
“We were able to go into halftime with a lead because we were focused on taking advantage of our opportunities in the circle,” Lakeland senior captain Jess Ascencao said. “We knew they were a strong team who planned to do the same.”
One reason why the Hornets were able to take advantage of their opportunities against the Quakers is because they were able to employ a well-balanced attack with numerous players contributing to the scoring.
Ascencao (2G), Kness (2G), McCrudden (1G, 2A), Cahill (1G, 1A), Halderman (1G) and Papanicolaou (2A) all took part in the Hornets’ offensive effort.
“As a team our focus today was working together and completing passes with the outsides of the field,” Ascencao said. “This was the key to building up our offense against a strong team.”
Halpin made one save in goal for Lakeland, which sealed the win against the Quakers by outscoring them 4-0 in the second half.
“On defense we focused on preventing corners and marking tightly around the circle, to take away as many opportunities as we could for them to score,” Ascencao said.
Yorktown lost at Roy C. Ketcham 7-1 on Oct. 16, with the host jumping out to a 3-1 halftime lead.
Sophia Traina scored for the Huskers in Dutchess County, with Izzy Cicinelli recording the assist.
Adeline Araneo (8 saves) and Hannah Farley (4 saves) played in goal for Yorktown.
The Huskers fell 8-0 at Fox Lane on Oct. 18 with Farley recording 10 saves and Araneo six saves.
Yorktown, to its credit, made Fox Lane goalie Grace Kiernan work, forcing her to make five saves.
The Huskers (2-12-2) finished the week with an 8-0 loss at Greeley on Oct. 20, with Araneo registering nine saves and Farley three saves.