After recently suffering its first loss of the season to Phillips Exeter Academy, Andover Girls Hockey entered its game against New Hampton on Saturday looking for a comeback win. Charlotte Welch ’18 scored a hat trick, and with a shutout from goalie Ashley Tucker ’18, Andover achieved its goal of redemption with a 3-0 victory. A subsequent 2-1 win over Tabor on Wednesday brought the team’s record to 13-1-5.
Andover entered this week with increased focus on accurate passing and intensified aggression on the offensive end. The girls sought to re-establish Andover as the top team in New England Preparatory School Athletic Council (NEPSAC) Division I.
Defender Sarah Rigazio ’18 said, “The loss to Exeter really hit us hard, although it wasn’t undeserving. We had been playing as if we were afraid to lose, almost as if we were playing against our own undefeated-ness. Exeter was the breaking point. Losing to Exeter was our wake-up call, and turned around the way we were playing. We came out stronger than we ever have on Saturday.” With Welch at the forefront, the team’s offensive players returned to their usual prowess against New Hampton.
Welch said, “For the forwards, we did a good job possessing it in their zone, getting shots off and getting the puck to the net. We capitalized on our opportunities, and we did a good job in the neutral zone containing their rushes. In the defensive zone, we held them to the outside which was good, and, even though they got a lot of shots off our goalie, Ashley played really well. We just played really well and they were a really good opponent and had a really good record so it was good for us to beat them.”
Rigazio continued, “For the first time all season, we played three strong periods, which is something we need to do for the rest of the season if we want to be successful.” On Wednesday, Andover had a slow start against Tabor. The teams were tied 0-0 at the end of the first period.
After the shutout, Meghan Ward ’19 scored a goal to put Andover on the board. Courtney Masotti ’17 broke the deadlock late in the third period with a game-winning goal.
Ward said, “From the drop of the puck and throughout the game, we matched their intensity and physicality. The offense did a nice job taking lots of shots and crashing the next hard. On Friday, we will definitely strive to continue to play the way we did against New Hampton and Tabor.” Andover looks to extend its winning streak against Governor’s at home on Friday.