Andover Edges Out Cushing, 2-1; Washburn ’11 Nets Game-Winner

Summer Washburn ’11 dominated in Andover’s game against Cushing, scoring both goals to secure the 2-1 win. Her first goal of the game was scored midway through the first half off of a long hit from Eliza Flynn ’10. Ten minutes into the second half, Cushing tied the game 1-1. But Andover quickly came back; two minutes later Washburn scored again, giving Andover the 2-1 lead. The goal was scored off of a corner, when Washburn retrieved the loose ball in the circle and fired into the back of the net. Statistically, Andover dominated the game, recording more shots, corners and free hits than the opposition. But Cushing was a tough, aggressive opponent. Andover created opportunities to score in the circle but struggled to finish with a goal. After the second goal, there were many close attempts to score, but none were successful. “Overall it wasn’t our best game but we pushed through our issues in the game and still came out with the win,” Flynn said. Although Andover won, they lacked their usual strong communication and fluidity. “The Cushing game was a pretty flat game for us. We just didn’t come out as cohesive and as energetic as usual,” said Co-Captain Kaitlyn McInnis. Kelly Walsh ’11 added, “The middle fielders, backs and forwards were not connecting as usual and people were bunching in the middle.” The ball did not change fields or move as sharply as usual. Despite these few setbacks, Andover ultimately possessed the drive and skill necessary to win. Now the girls are focusing on their final test of the real season. This Saturday, Andover will face its archrival, Phillips Exeter. “Exeter is a very strong team and has some very skilled players and they will be a true test of strength for our team,” said Walsh. Exeter’s overall record is 15-1, with only Andover left to play. Exeter’s first loss came against the seven-time New England Champion Hotchkiss, ending the game at 1-6. Andover has an overall record of 12-1-1. “Record-wise we are considered the underdogs; however, when we work together we are practically unbeatable and I have faith in us as a team,” Flynn said. Last season Andover suffered an upset, losing to Exeter 1-2 in overtime. This year the team hopes to “play very aggressively, to communicate with poise and clarity and to support one another all over the field. We want to bring synergy not just energy to the field,” Coach Kate Dolan explained. The players are very excited to play another strong team, and they look to use a combination of both fun and intensity; they also hope to get back for last season’s loss. But this year’s game is on the home turf—where Andover is undefeated. The battle will commence this Saturday at 11:30 at Phelps Stadium.