Comeback Avenges Season Opener Loss

With 3:26 left in the third period, Maggie Walsh ’14 toe-dragged between two Winchendon defenders, faked the shot on the backhand, and wristed the puck home above the goalie’s glove. Assisted by Lexi Davidson ’17, the goal was the only goal of the matchup between Andover Girls Hockey and Winchendon on Wednesday. After dropping its first game of the season 4-2 at the hands of BB&N, Andover returned to the ice with a vengeance and trumped Winchendon 1-0. In addition to her assist, Davidson led the team with seven shots, including five in the third period. On the defensive end of the ice, goalkeeper Ashlyn Aiello ’14 recorded a shutout and prevented all of Winchendon’s 23 shots from finding the back of the net. “My line had a lot of good chance and carrying that over and turning that into goals. Also we controlled the game for the most part and we drew a lot of penalties and that allowed to be man up for a majority of the first period,” said Davidson. Although Andover fell to BB&N on Saturday, the team delivered strong individual performances. Aiello saved 19 of 23 shots for a .826 save percentage, and Hannah Sorkin ’14 scored a goal and an assist. However, with the game tied 2-2 going into the third period, Andover struggled to fill holes in defense. In final minutes of the period, BB&N scored an empty net goal while Andover attempted to get its sixth skater on the ice. “The first game against BB&N was a great game. The outcome wasn’t what we hoped for but the energy and teamwork in our game was better than ever,” wrote Nikoletta Toffoloni ’15 in an email to The Phillipian. “Even though we lost, we realized that if we work together and motivate each other, we can succeed.” After finishing last season with a disappointing 2-21 record, Andover Girls Hockey looks to improve. Graduating only one Senior, the team boasts an enthusiastic and seasoned lineup led by Captain Renée LaMarche ’14. Sorkin returns to the ice after a hiatus due to a torn ACL and will be instrumental in defense. “One of our strengths is our work ethic, heart and energy. At every practice, everyone shows up to get better, and by the time we get off the ice, we are a better team. We work hard every practice, every workout and every game because we want to be a winning team. We need to want it more than our competitors and we do,” said Sorkin. “One of our weaknesses is our puck movement. We have not been playing together for long, but the more we skate together the better our puck movement will be,” Sorkin added, acknowledging the team’s shortcomings. She continued, “Right now we are really emphasizing talking to each other during practices during drills to get into the habit of communicating on the ice at all times.” Andover Girls Hockey will face Northfield Mount Hermon at home on Friday.