Amesbury Indians Field Hockey '07

Mon, Sep 10, 2007 07:00 PM @ North Andover
Team Final
Amesbury 0
North Andover 3
Amesbury's Jessica Nikas makes a diving save to block a shot by North Andover's Katherine Andrusin at North Andover High School last night. » Katie McMahon, Staff PhotographerMore photos

No contest: Knights checkmate Amesbury

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Monday, September, 10 By Dave Dyer
Staff writer

NORTH ANDOVER | The domination was obvious almost from the start, but last night's convincing 3-0 victory by North Andover's field hockey team at Joe Walsh Stadium was as rewarding as a one-goal overtime playoff victory.

It did, after all, come over perennial Cape Ann League power Amesbury, which is the only other league team besides the Knights to capture the league crown in the last half-decade. "They're always a big rival so it was good to play that well against them," said Knights tri-captain Kathie Andrusin. "This was a really big win for us."

Andrusin fueled the victory by scoring the first of three goals in a six-minute stretch in an impressive first half. She scored at the 8:25 mark on an assist by Katie Boringa. That was followed by a goal from aggressive Krissy Whitley four minutes later, again with a Boringa assist, and a final tally by Lauren Gaffny on a Whitley assist.

The first two goals were scored on penalty corners, a statistic which further illustrated North Andover's superiority. The Knights piled up a whopping 17 penalty corners to just four for Amesbury. Moreover, Alison McCarthy was forced to make just two saves on the night while posting her second straight 3-0 shutout.

"I'm really happy with the way we played and that we're very balanced right now," said North Andover coach Dianne Freiermuth. "And it's always nice to beat our rival. That's a program that for a long time we were trying to be like. Now I like to think we're there."

Returning stalwarts from last year's Division 1 Eastern Mass. finalist squad like Andrusin, Boringa and Gaffny led the way, but newcomers were just as instrumental.

Sophomore Candace Waldie, who didn't play last year, showed great speed and potential on the right wing and both Kristin O'Connor and Rosemary Boshar stood out on defense. O'Connor played mostly JV in her introduction to the sport a year ago and Boshar moved over from forward to ease the loss of several talented seniors.

"Candace has been a great addition," said Freiermuth. "She has tremendous speed and is a fabulous athlete. And her field hockey skills are getting better every day."

Even in the wake of the convincing defeat, 38-year Amesbury head coach Gail Kelleher was not discouraged.

"We were so much improved over our first game, I'm thrilled," said Kelleher, whose club is now 0-2. "I think we played much better against a very, very good team.

"We're still trying to fill the shoes of (last year's leading scorer) Katie Enaire, and we haven't done it yet. But we're getting better and we had several kids step it up today. I thought Katie Hathaway and Kelsey Fournier both had nice games.

"I was impressed with North Andover, especially with their passing. They've really become a strong program and they're very hard to beat on this field."

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