North­ern field hockey opens with win

Pa­tri­ots han­dle Ea­gles in field hockey opener

The Calvert Recorder - - Front Page - By ANDY STATES as­tates@somd­news.com

De­spite her best ef­forts, North­ern’s Cal­lie Heim just couldn’t find a way to put a shot in the goal through her team’s pre­sea­son scrim­mages.

That proved to be be of no is­sue when the Pa­tri­ots opened their reg­u­lar sea­son against the vis­it­ing North Point Ea­gles on Tues­day af­ter­noon.

Heim reg­is­tered a hat trick to help the hosts take com­mand in what ended a 6-1 North­ern win in the South­ern Maryland Ath­letic Con­fer­ence non­di­vi­sion matchup.

“To­day was def­i­nitely a good game for me,” Heim said. “I’m try­ing to score a lot this sea­son. It’s my se­nior sea­son. I’m try­ing to make it my best.”

North­ern (1-0 over­all) took early con­trol on Zoey Masters’ goal roughly eight min­utes into the game. Her ini­tial tally was fol­lowed by Heim’s first two goals of the sea­son to build the hosts’ lead to 3-0 by the half.

The Pa­tri­ots re­mained on the at­tack in the sec­ond half, with Heim’s third goal fol­lowed shortly there­after by a Brooke Miller goal. Miller added another to in­crease North­ern’s lead to 6-0. North Point even­tu­ally broke up the Pa­tri­ots’ shutout as­pi­ra­tions when Ni­cole Wil­burn con­verted a penalty stroke in the lat­ter stages of the sec­ond half.

All in all, North­ern head coach Ni­cole Ker­foot thought it was a pos­i­tive first game for her squad.

“It was a great start. The

girls worked well mov­ing the ball up the field, tran­si­tioned well,” she said. “It was a nice good start. We had a lot of shots on goal. Their goalie [Olivia Bell] is great. Luck­ily we got six to go through. It was a good start.”

North­ern en­ters the year with a rather ex­pe­ri­enced group, with a large group of se­niors lead­ing the way. While the group will be counted on to lead the team as it pro­gresses through the sea­son, it also has played a role in for­ti­fy­ing the ju­nior var­sity squad, ac­cord­ing to Ker­foot.

“We have nine se­niors this year, so we have a good, strong group com­ing in here,” Ker­foot said. Her team is next sched­uled to play at Thomas Stone at 4 p.m. Tues­day. “They’ve all played to­gether for the last four years, so they know each other well. They know where each one’s go­ing to be on the field, so that’s a great help. They’ve been help­ful in get­ting our JV pro­gram back on track. We had 15 new play­ers this year, three re­turn­ers for JV, so they’re def­i­nitely help­ing our JV play­ers get on the ball.”

Trav­el­ing over to Calvert County to open the sea­son against a typ­i­cally strong North­ern team wasn’t the eas­i­est way for North Point (0- 1) to open its cam­paign. It was a trip that Ea­gles head coach Sandra Fair hoped would be ed­u­ca­tional, though.

“It’s a hard game for the first game of the sea­son,” Fair said. Her team is next sched­uled to play at Calvert at 4 p.m. Mon­day. “We’ll take away a lot from it, learn from it. That was a great stroke [on Wil­burn’s goal].”

For Heim, the open­ing game of­fered a glimpse at what she hopes the Pa­tri­ots can be in the year to come. She views the team’s com­mu­ni­ca­tion as vi­tal in it ul­ti­mately re­al­iz­ing the goals it has for the sea­son.

“I think def­i­nitely com- mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween the mid­field and the for­wards,” she said. “The com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween the two is re­ally key be­cause our passes are what get us goals. ... I think this is a great start to our sea­son. I think it’s a pre­cur­sor of what’s to come.”

STAFF PHOTO BY ANDY STATES

North­ern’s Cal­lie Heim at­tempts to ad­vance the ball past North Point’s Amelda Ni­chol­son dur­ing the teams’ game at North­ern on Tues­day af­ter­noon. Heim scored three goals to lead North­ern to a 6-1 win.

STAFF PHOTO BY ANDY STATES

North­ern’s Zoey Masters works the ball down the field early in the Pa­tri­ots’ game against the vis­it­ing North Point Ea­gles on Tues­day af­ter­noon. Masters scored the Pa­tri­ots’ first goal in what ended a 6-1 Pa­tri­ots’ win.

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