With 11 seconds left on the clock, Kaitlin Hoang ’17 split the two Worcester Academy defenders, won the race into the offensive zone and flicked the puck into the empty net. Hoang’s three goals for Andover, her first career hat trick, made up all of Andover’s goals in a 3-1 victory over Worcester on Wednesday.
“[After I scored the third goal,] I was just really happy I didn’t miss the empty net,” said Hoang.
Both teams were sluggish in the first period, with only seven shots between the two sides. Worcester struck first early in the second period to take a 1-0 lead, using its offensive prowess to set the tone in the second period.
“They were a fast and physical team, always hanging a girl high in the slot trying to get a quick odd-man rush, so we had to adjust quickly,” said Anna Fucillo ’15.
It was only when Andover started to push hard offensively in the third period that it took the lead. Andover took full control of the game in the third period, putting a whopping 18 shots on net. Hoang was the main beneficiary of such a huge volume of shots.
Caroline Garrity ’15 said, “Coming back from vacation with only two practices is tough, and in the first period, we were all a little shaky. In the second and third periods, we came out strong, even when we were down. Today was definitely a major win for us.”
In addition to accounting for all of Andover’s goals, Hoang won 11 of 15 faceoff matchups. Ashley Tucker ’18 was strong between the posts, stopping 19 of the 20 shots sent her way. Tucker also quelled a critical breakaway in the third period to preserve Andover’s 2-1 lead.
Andover’s powerful first line, comprised of Hoang, Kelli Mackey ’15 and Garrity, has been tough to stop thus far in the young season.
Mackey picked up three assists against Worcester while Garrity picked up two. As the team’s top three leaders in many offensive categories, the line has accounted for 15 of Andover’s 22 goals, as well as over half the team’s total shots.
Mackey entered play on Wednesday having scored in all four of Andover’s games at the Patsy K. Odden (PKO) Tournament at the Taft School, which occurred over Winter Break. Mackey has put up eight goals and 12 points in just nine games.
“Everyone I’m on the ice with has given me great opportunities to put the puck in the net. I would say as a [Post-Graduate] I have a lot more confidence this season, and at the Taft tournament, after my first goal, I just got on a roll,” said Mackey.
At the PKO tourney, the team knocked off perennial powerhouses Tabor and Taft, 3-2 and 1-0, respectively, in group play. The team then beat a strong Choate team 3-1 in the semifinals, but fell to Kent 5-1 in the finals.
Andover plays Taft on Saturday in a rematch from the tournament.