With a strong defense and goalkeeper and Co-Captain Kennedy Everson ’21 stopping 15 shots from Phillips Exeter Academy, Andover Girls Lacrosse held its ground against Exeter this past Saturday. Additionally, the offensive front created opportunities with its ball movement, with Isabela Miller ’21 scoring 6 goals while executing agile deeks and Lucy Lasaster ’21 scoring a quick response to tie the game early on. Defeating Exeter with a score of 16-9, Andover’s record now stands at 5-2.
Everson acknowledges that the team faced nerves before the game, as Andover was facing its biggest rival.
Everson said, “We were definitely expecting a very competitive game and there was a lot of mixed excitement and nervousness before the game. Some of our goals were to take that and reframe it towards motivating our hard work on the field. We also wanted to make it memorable because this has been such a hard year and it was certainly a very special game.”
According to Grace Hammond ’23, in preparation for Saturday’s game, the team worked on a variety of skills that proved to be problematic in previous games.
Hammond said, “In practice, we worked on moving the ball quickly on [the] attack and taking care of the ball. In our game [against Noble and Greenough], we had a lot of issues with turning over the ball and not moving it quick enough so the defenders would end up trapping us. We mainly focused on that and I think we did a good job executing.”
Despite being injured, Emily Smith ’22 noticed that these skills worked on in practice came into fruition during the game. And although the team was forced to play with one less player for much of the game, applying those skills helped it come out victorious.
Smith said, “I think a big point [we] were working on is our transition and our defense, which really kept the game together because we played a man down in the second half. Being able to catch the ball upfield and hold possession when we had it made it a lot easier to score goals and made sure that it wasn’t on the other side of the field so they could [not] capitalize on opportunities. A lot of defenders got many ground balls and [that] made transitions a big part of the game.”
Moving forward, the team plans to utilize lessons learned from this game to refine skills and update game plans, according to Hammond.
Hammond said, “[We will be working on] playing clean defense and not taking checks we shouldn’t be taking and, overall, just playing smarter and improving game situational awareness.”
Andover looks to repeat its win against Exeter this weekend at A/E.