After a close two-point loss to Phillips Exeter Academy last year, Andover Girls Basketball hopes to restore its winning ways this Saturday. Andover currently holds a 6-8 record, compared to Exeter’s 2-16 record. Earlier this season, Andover beat Exeter 40-37.
Andover has been working hard to prepare for the competition, with players planning to give the game their all and emerge victorious.
Molly Katarincic ’18 said, “Lately in practice we have been doing drills that are super specific to the team that we are playing, so already having played Exeter will help us a lot with pinpointing their strong skills and plays. I’m really proud of how our team has played in our last few games, and I think we are really starting to put things together.”
Head Coach Lani Silversides said, “A/E is always so competitive and quite often the best game of the season. In my time here, we have won the A/E game six times and lost five — two in overtime, and many come down to the end. So needless to say, we expect a good game.”
Andover hopes to arrive on court fully prepared with determination and energy.
Laura Bilal ’17 said, “We are so excited to go into this match up against Exeter. We beat them the first time and are looking to beat them a second time. This game is very special and means a lot to the five seniors, and we have asked that the rest of the team put their heart on the floor for us. We want to come together and play the best basketball we have played all season. We always strive to peak at A/E. We are going to play with intensity and we will try to execute in all aspects of the game plan.”
Katarincic said, “I think that the biggest thing about Andover/Exeter day is that nothing is for certain. There is so much hype and excitement that either team could win no matter what happened in the first game.
Earlier this season, Andover Girls Hockey earned a 6-1 win against archrival Phillips Exeter Academy. Andover looks to add another victory to its record against Exeter this Saturday. Currently, Andover holds a 12-9 record, while Exeter stands at 9-13-2. Previously Andover has defeated Exeter 2-0 in 2015 and 4-0 in 2014. In 2016, the game ended in a 1-1 tie in overtime.
Head Coach Martha Fenton ’83 said, “One of our greatest strengths is that we play as a team. The girls on this team love to move the puck and work hard together. We are also very lucky this year to have depth and talent in every position.”
Andover hopes to come out with a lot of power, score early on, and keep its energy consistent throughout the game, according to the players. Andover also looks to keep constant pressure on Exeter in order to cause turnovers.
Captain Kaitlin Hoang ’17 said, “We can play more lines than Exeter, and hopefully this will allow us to tire them out and stay fresh for the entire game. We want to score early in the game so that we can establish a lead and take control early on. Obviously, our ultimate goal is to win the game.”
Meghan Ward ’19 said, “This year, our team has done a really nice job of moving the puck quickly in all three zones of the ice. If we skate harder than Exeter we will definitely do well. Throughout the season the team has focused on creating turnovers in the middle of the ice, so we will continue to work on our neutral zone forecheck against Exeter.”
After playing a tough schedule this season, Andover must win its game against Exeter to be considered for playoffs.
Coach Fenton said, “Our goal is to develop as a team and to be better each game than the one before. We’ve challenged ourselves with a schedule that includes all the top teams in the league, and we have shown that when we play tougher we can compete with everyone.”
After a slim overtime loss to Phillips Exeter Academy earlier in the season, Andover Boys Hockey looks to add another win to its 14-9-2 season. Last year, Andover faced its archrival Exeter twice, falling short both times, with scores of 7-0 and 5-2, respectively.
According to Post-Graduate Kyle Lynch ’17, Andover will have to move the puck more quickly than it has in the past against Exeter.
“We are looking to play hard, and play together. We know we are going to have to move the puck in order to win because Exeter is a really good team, but we know we can take them down,” said Lynch.
Looking into the postseason, Andover has the opportunity to improve its playoff rankings with a victory.
Head Coach Paul Tortorella ’80 wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “We want to play a good, team game and to just focus on enjoying the competition while winning the one on one puck battles, one play, one shift at a time.”
This season, Andover has continued to develop its communication skills and teamwork, and it hopes that all of its hard work will reflect in its performance on Saturday.
Co-Captain Jack Cusack ’18 said, “We are going to represent our school to the best of our ability. This is one of the oldest and most cherished rivalries in all of high school sports, and we are all extremely fortunate for this opportunity.”
“Exeter is a strong team and got the upper hand on us earlier in the season, but we are going to bounce back strong. We will be ready to go on Saturday. Our coaches have constructed an excellent game plan, and we are excited to execute it. It’s going to be a great game,” continued Cusack.
This Saturday, Andover Boys Basketball will look to redeem itself against archrival, Phillips Exeter Academy, after losing 73-49 earlier this season. Andover currently stands at a record of 6-16. Despite its losing record, Andover hopes to work on its offensive strategy in the coming days to combat Exeter’s 10-6 record.
Since Andover played Exeter earlier this year, it already has a good idea of what to expect. The team hopes to improve its shooting accuracy in the coming days, as Exeter is known for taking advantage of offensive opportunities on both ends of the court.
Head Coach Terrell Ivory ’00 said, “We were able to play them already and this was a big help. We could see the film and improve on what needed improvement. We played a lot of zone. They had a lot of solid shooters so this didn’t work well, we will probably try more man to man and try limiting them to one shot.”
The team will enter its final regular-season game with strong players, great team chemistry, and a season full of experience and preparation.
Jackson Emus ’19 said, “We have played a bunch of games together, and we are a strong unit. We know each other’s strengths and weaknesses, and we will be ready.”
Post-Graduate Kailan Lee ’17 added, “Our chemistry has improved a ton. We have each other’s backs on and off the court. I love playing and practicing with these guys day in and day out.”
Emus said, “We want to establish a strong offensive front through our post players. We also hope to lock down defensively and limit second chance points through strong rebounding and boxing out.”
Andover looks to establish an offensive presence and cut down on any chance for another win for Exeter in its upcoming game.