Weekly Feature



2014-10-29 / Sports

Kenmore’s season ends in Class A quarterfinals

Field hockey
by BRANDON KILIJANSKI
Reporter

Kenmore drew a 0-0 tie at halftime against West Seneca West in Thursday’s Class A quarterfinals. But the Lady Indians managed to score four goals in the second half to advance with a win.

West Seneca West scored three times in the first seven minutes after the break to take a commanding lead. Then with eight minutes left on the clock, sophomore Emma Botham scored Kenmore’s lone goal in the 4-1 loss.

Botham jumped on a rebound after a shot by senior Ally Kerr. It was Botham’s ninth goal of the season.

“All year long when she had a chance on the left side of the net, she buried it,” head coach Les Simon said.

West Seneca West added another tally late in the game. They wore Kenmore down in the second half by being aggressive in the attack circle. West Seneca West earned 20 penalty corners overall.

Senior goalie Melissa Stodgstill made 16 saves for Kenmore.

“She played terrific and gave us a chance to win,” Simon said.

Kenmore entered the game as the fifth seed with a 5-7 record, while West Seneca West had earned the three seed at 7-9.

At halftime, Simon emphasized that in a scoreless game West Seneca West had more pressure on them as the favorites. The plan was to be aggressive in scoring first, because with a 30 minute running clock that could have made the difference in the game.

“But they scored first to flip the table,” Simon added. “The game plan going in was the same for some of our better wins — capitalize on the chances we get, have great goaltending and play airtight defense. It worked for a half, but unfortunately we couldn’t ever get ahead.”

Besides Kerr and Stodgstill, Kenmore has three other seniors that will be graduating which include Kailyn Burke, Sarah Wakefield and Christine Hickey. Those are all key players from all four layers of the field, but the good news is that Kenmore is stocked with young talent to fill those holes.

Kenmore will have Emily King, Cara Klopp, Grace Simmons, Spencer Vogt, Angie Azzinarro and Melanie Georger all returning for their senior year.

“Next year we will be a veteran team with a lot of experience,” Simon said.

Prior to the playoff game, Kenmore concluded the regular season with a 2-1 loss in overtime against Newfane on Oct. 21. Newfane scored within the first three minutes of the game, but then Kenmore found its legs and took control for the rest of the game.

Botham scored late in the first half to tie it at 1-1. Again, she scored on a rebound after a shot by Kerr.

“We don’t score pretty goals. The majority of our goals this year were from driving to the net and grinding,” Simon said.

Kenmore jumped on the attack in the second half, but couldn’t finish on any of their scoring chances. In overtime, Kenmore had a couple shots miss wide and Newfane’s goalie came up with a point-blank save.

Kenmore outshot Newfane 24-9 in the game.

“We outshot them, outplayed them and did everything but outscore them,” Simon said. “We worked as hard as we could and had our chances, but their goalie was awfully good.”

One minute after Kenmore’s best scoring chance in overtime, Newfane scored on a penalty corner to win.

“It was a tough loss but our kids gave a full effort. We did all we could, but some days the ball doesn’t bounce your way,” Simon said.

It was a season of transition for Kenmore as Simon led the program for the first time and there were many players filling in the lineup for those who graduated last year.

“We had some nice wins, especially beating Wilson,” Simon said. “They carried themselves in a very high manor and competed extremely hard. I’d like to thank the assistant coaches — Jeff Orlowski, Zara Sparacino and Alex Valentino — who were all great for the girls.”

email: brandonk@beenews.com

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