Barreling through multiple defenders, Maddy Silveira ’20 drew out the goalie and kicked the ball into the back of the net. Silveira’s goal helped propel Andover to an early lead in their game against Lawrence Academy, which ended in a 2-2 tie. Andover’s record now stands at 7-7-2.
The Friday game was the team’s Senior Night, a home game where the graduating Seniors are celebrated. The game brought out many emotions amongst the players, and the support from the other students in the stands served as a continual motivator, according to Isabel Castro PG’19 and Anna Hurley ’21.
Castro said, “This was my second Senior Night. It was kind of hard to go through it again, but even though in my last high school, I’ve played with those girls my whole life, I feel like just being on GVS for the two months that I’ve been, I’ve already created such a strong bond with some of the players.”
“There were lots of tears, especially from the Seniors. [Co-Captains Allison Zhu ’19 and Elise MacDonald ’19], they are incredible captains. It helped a lot to have all the support on Senior Night with a lot of fans coming to watch and cheer us on,” said Hurley.
According to Hurley and Castro, the turf, which was wet from rain Friday, made the ground slick and sped up the ball, forcing both teams to adapt to the pace. The team was forced to adjust its strategy and eliminate certain techniques due to the weather.
Hurley said, “It had been raining all morning [and] there was still water on the field. We were on turf, and we usually play on the grass. We had to adjust to the speed of play because the ball rolls faster on the turf than it does the grass, and plus the water which makes it even faster.”
“Since it was on astroturf, [the ball] skids really really fast. So normal lofted balls over the top are not going to work at all. It has to be on the ground.” said Castro.
According to Katherine Marquis ’21, the team was able to move past Lawrence’s defenders and stayed aggressive despite the weather.
Marquis said, “On offense, we did well with connecting passes and working together to get the ball in the net. We pressed their defenders and keeper well. Our first goal came from Maddy Silveira, who kept pressure on their defenders and scored.”
Over the course of the game, the team was able to maintain its communication which helped coordinate the defense.
“They tried playing a lot of balls over the top which our defenders were fast enough to keep up with. We communicated really well, and we marked really well,” said Castro.
Having recently recovered from a concussion, Kennedy Everson ’21 returned as goalie and earned the accolade of Player of the Game.
Hurley said, “Kennedy has been through a lot lately, but we couldn’t be more proud of her because she came back [on Friday], and she did a great job. She got Player of the Game, and I think that was totally deserved. She’s such a strong person, totally inspiring. Whenever she’s faced adversity, she’s always come back and blown us away with her performance.”
According to Hurley, the most challenging aspects of the game for Andover were switching and finishing the points.
“One thing we were struggling with in the first half was switching the point of attack and getting it in the box too because when that goalie was saving the ball, sometimes she let out a rebound,” said Hurley.
As this game was one of the last ones of the season, Marquis and Hurley had much to say about how much the team has improved.
“We improved from past games because we have gotten better at teamwork, communication, and connecting passes. We have gotten better at switching fields and playing balls backwards in order to end up going forwards,” said Marquis.
“I’m just really proud of the progress that we’ve had this far as a team. Our midfielders were really being aggressive in there fighting for the ball. Our forwards were finishing when we had our chances. I think as a team, we’ve come a long way in terms of how we work together too. I feel like we’re working together a lot better compared to two months ago,” said Hurley.
Andover will play at 1:30 p.m. at home on Saturday for Andover/Exeter Weekend.
Editor’s Note: Allison Zhu is a Commentary Editor for The Phillipian.