Portsmouth 1, Goffstown 0
Well, we were wrong in saying that Goffstown would win, but we were not wrong in saying, if Portsmouth won, how they would win, and they did exactly what we said they would do. They popped in one goal off a counter; then goalie Kayleigh Vogel kept them alive.
Goffstown dominated, for the most part, not allowing Portsmouth a corner or a shot in the first half, and only one corner and two shots in the second. However, those two shots are all Portsmouth needed. With 10:26 to go in the game, Greta Ferdinand sent a 35-40 yard pass to Ellie Hunkins, who found herself one on one with Goffstown goalie, Mackenzie Potvin, then did what she does best, score goals for Portsmouth, as she tucked it by Potvin, scoring the eventual game-winner. Goffstown put ten shots on goal in the second half, but couldn't find the back of the net, thanks to Vogel.
Goffstown had two big chances in the game. In the first half, Ali Larochelle found herself one on one against Vogel. Vogel came out and slid for the ball, tripping Larochelle as she went down hard, earning Goffstown a corner, but they could not convert. In the second half, Vogel made a great back to back save. The first shot was a standard save, but as a Goffstown attacker got the rebound, she tried to put it in the far corner, Vogel had to dive backward to her left to make the save, then her defense, was able to get the ball out.
Portsmouth's next game will be at #1 seeded Souhegan. If they want to come out on top in that game, Vogel will have to be at her very best, as she is going against Souhegan' state-leading offense.
Plymouth 1, Sanborn 0
After a 90-minute bus ride north, Sanborn couldn't pull out the upset, against Plymouth. Plymouth's Kelsey Johnston connected with Olivia Eastman, for the only goal of the game. Plymouth's Molly Edmark, had a relatively easy day in goal, only having to make two saves. Plymouth put 11 shots on goal, earning 13 corners.
Plymouth's quarterfinal matchup will be against #2 seeded Windham, and the state's top scorer, Kate Blasidell, on Friday afternoon.
Kennett 5, Hollis-Brookline 0
As expected, Kennett cruised past Hollis-Brookline. Kennett goalie, Hannah Frittenburg, was only called upon once, picking up one save on the afternoon. Natalie Perry scored twice and assisted another. Chrissy Coffield scored two, while Alexa Gutowski picked up the last one. Taylor Nusbaum had two assists, and Ashton Coleman had one.
Friday, Kennett will travel to Derryfield, where they'll play their quarterfinal matchup. They lost to Derryfield twice during the regular season. Both times was 2-1, once was in OT.
Just to put in perspective, how Hollis-Brookline's field hockey team's day went, they took a three-hour bus ride to Kennett, played an hour of field hockey, lost 5-0, and then took a three-hour ride back to Hollis. They spent, literally, 25% of their day riding a bus.
Division 1 First Round Predictions.
- Merrimack v. Salem - This is probably the hardest one for us to predict because we just don't know who has the advantage. The game is at Merrimack, and Merrimack has been one of the best teams at home this season, going 6-1-0, but Salem has pace going forward, Briana Boucher, Chloe Sicard, and Kayleigh Greenfield, are very capable of creating devastating counter-attacks. Prediction: Salem, their ability to create a counter attack, is the reason we are picking them. However, with home-field advantage, we would not bet against Merrimack.
- Dover v. Keene - Dover's program had been turned around over the last two seasons, thanks to Head Coach Sarah Michaud. Are they a D1 powerhouse, no, but they are someone you have to take seriously when you play them. Lizzy Morse has been a massive player for them, leading them in scoring, and controlling the midfield. Emily Lopez has also played a significant role this season, her pace to move the ball up the field and her defensive ability has been big for Dover. Keene has had a bounce-back season, after missing the tournament last year. Maggie Cahoon has been terrific this season, as she currently sits tied for 6th, in the state, for assists, with 10. Emma Cahoon has been vital for Keene's defense stopping teams attacks. The two tied during the regular season, 2-2, so this could be a game that goes the distance. Prediction: Dover, The coaching ability of Sarah Michaud, can't be discredited, and the combination of Lopez and Morse in the middle, we think will eventually overpower Keene.
- Central v. Exeter - This is a rematch of one of last year's quarterfinals. Last year Central ran through Exeter, advancing to the final four, and we are sure Head Coach Deb Grott will want a little revenge for last season. Central has had a good season after losing a solid senior class. Abby Burns has been vital for Central's defense and has made a name for herself as one of the top defenders in D1. The triple threat of Cam Casey, Katelyn Parker, and Annie Kew, always looks lethal and is probably the main reason why Central has been able to stay very competitive this season. Exeter has a problem, Bri Petruccelli, who is one the state's best midfielders, wasn't playing their second to last game of the season. We do not know if she played their last game or not, but if she is not available, there's about a 90% chance Exeter will not win. If she is playing, the game goes to a 50/50 game. Two other key players for Exeter is Sophomore defender Audrey Farrar, and Sophomore midfielder/forward Maddie Davis. Farrar has been Exeter's biggest bright spot, as she has become a significant defender throughout the season. Davis has improved with every game, using her pace and skill to move the ball up the field. They will both have to be at their very best today if they want to win. Prediction: Central, the reason we are saying this is Central has a much more experienced team, and we think that will help them over the line. The youth of Exeter is excellent, but as a team, they have not reached the level they need to be at. If Exeter does win, which is a possibility, they will win on the counter; they will sit deep, and try to make a big pass forward to hit Central with a counter-attack. Again, Exeter's Petruccelli is the biggest factor, if she is playing the game goes to a 50/50 game, if not, Exeter will most likely lose.