SHREWSBURY – For the second consecutive year, the Shrewsbury and Andover varsity field hockey teams met in the MIAA Division 1 State Championship Tournament.
Last year’s matchup, in the round of eight, saw Andover score the lone goal of the game in the third quarter to defeat the Colonials 1-0.
This year’s round of four matchup on Nov. 15 was similarly competitive, but after the Shrewsbury field hockey team opened the scoring with the game’s first goal late in the third quarter, they were unable to hold on to their lead, losing 2-1 at the final whistle.
The battle to claim a spot in the championship was fought by both teams in the midfield for much of this competition, and at halftime neither team had found a way to successfully breakdown the opposing defense. It wasn’t until late in the third quarter that Shrewsbury senior Lexi Kent tallied the first goal, with an assist credited to fellow senior Maddie Mrva.
“We played hard the whole time. We scored first, we kept the momentum going, it was back and forth the whole time,” said Shrewsbury head coach Courtney Lavin after the game. “We were doing really, really great things. It’s just a couple of unlucky bounces in the end.”
Andover leveled the score early in the fourth quarter, and then with just 2:07 remaining the Golden Warrior’s sophomore Scarlett Glass scored the deciding goal.
Shrewsbury will graduate eight players from their side this year, including team captains Taylor Ryder, Olivia Connolly, Kent, and Mrva.
While the Shrewsbury field hockey coaches know there will be many roles to fill next year, they repeated their gratitude for the impact that those seniors had on the team’s success on the field, and more importantly their leadership with underclassmen both on and off the field.
“The seniors set the tone for them, so they know what they have to do and live up to,” Assistant Coach Lauren Silbor said following the game.
Andover will now face Walpole in the state championship game, a rematch of last year’s championship where Andover earned the title with a 1-0 victory.
The game will take place at Burlington High School, at 11 a.m. on Saturday.