After Mark Witt ’20 and Chris Morse ’20 forced the Dexter Southfield goalie to throw a clear, Wesley Maloney ’22 beat multiple Dexter players to the ball and scored the final goal of the game, securing an 11-8 victory for Andover on Wednesday, May 8th.
Despite this victory, the team was unable to maintain a winning streak and went on to fall to Pomfret 8-10 on Saturday and Brooks 7-9 on Monday. The team’s record now stands at 5-8.
The team has played a more settled offense but has been unable to come together to finish according to Jed Heald ’20 and Alan Hernandez ’19.
“We were making a bunch of plays… I think we just struggled to come together and we need to play a little more disciplined. Just playing more disciplined and as the older guys, being role models for the younger guys – nothing super specific in terms of the games, but just in general,” Heald said.
Hernandez said, “I feel that one thing we’ve focused on in our style of play is being more patient because we don’t play our best when we’re chaotic. We’ve taken time to have longer possessions and run different plays if the first one doesn’t work.”
The team has been working to end the season on a high note by focusing on slowing the game down to create a high percentage opportunity, according to Captain Sawyer Moody ’19.
“The team has been working to finish the season strong and positively. We want to play for each other and have no regrets. As far as our playing style is concerned, I’d like for us to be more patient and take advantage of all the strong things we do on offense rather than forcing a quick, low-percentage opportunity,” wrote Moody in an email to The Phillipian.
Leading up to the games, the team focused on how they themselves could improve rather than worrying about another team’s technique according to Jon Krikorian ’21 and Hernandez.
Hernandez said, “One of our philosophies has been that we will never care what the other team does, but we will try and perfect what we do. We didn’t do anything different, we just came in with the mentality that we were going to play our game.”
“How we prepared for the games was really much more of a focus on mindset and not really the other team. Not worrying about the refs, just about worrying about ourselves. And that was it; our preparation for playing Pomfret was worrying more about us and our team,” said Krikorian.
Witt in particular has been a key defensive player in the past few games keeping the score deficit to a minimum according to Hernandez and Heald.
“Mark Witt has been throwing some hard checks and he’s just a monster all over the field. He does what we need him to do,” Heald said.
Hernandez added, “[Witt] is strong, fast, and ultimately one of our best defenseman. He knows how to pressure his guy and strip the ball. He is also good on the clearing game.”
Although the losses impacted the team, the team is still improving and hopes to play a more selfless, team focused game, according to Will Rickards ’21.
“I think any loss effects the team play a little bit but I think the loss against Pomfret was definitely unfortunate because it was such a close game. I think in the past two weeks we’ve strayed away a little from playing as a whole but we will hopefully pull it together for the last three games of the season,” Rickards said.