Surg­ing in the sec­ond half

Hur­ri­canes score seven goals in fi­nal 30 min­utes

The Calvert Recorder - - Sports - By ANDY STATES as­tates@somd­

Judg­ing by the match­ing ice packs on their knees fol­low­ing their field hockey team’s game against the vis­it­ing North­ern Pa­tri­ots on Tues­day af­ter­noon, one might have as­sumed that Hunt­ing­town’s Alexa and Ken­ley Zeruto had been in­volved in the type of high-pres­sure bat­tle typ­i­cal of the ri­valry be­tween the Calvert County squads.

And for a half, they were, but the host Hur­ri­canes ex­ploded for seven unan­swered goals in the sec­ond half to take a 9-2 South­ern Mary­land Ath­letic Con­fer­ence Ch­e­sa­peake Divi­sion de­ci­sion from the Pa­tri­ots.

“For some rea­son we’re al­ways a sec­ond-half team,” Alexa

Zeruto said. “We come out a lit­tle bit ner­vous, but we picked it up in the sec­ond half. Our de­flec­tions were bet­ter, we were seal­ing off the post, which is huge be­cause we had a lot of balls go­ing straight past in the first half. Our drives were on point, we were block tack­ling on de­fense, which is an­other huge thing that we’ve been work­ing on for a week.”

North­ern (4-1, 1-1 SMAC Ch­e­sa­peake) had not sur­ren­dered a goal through its first four games, but al­lowed two by the mid­point of the first half against Hunt­ing­town (5-1, 1-1), as Alexa Zeruto and Taya Sir­man slipped shots into the cage to give the hosts the early 2-0 lead. But the Pa­tri­ots re­sponded with goals by Han­nah Schiebach and Alayna Stew­art, the lat­ter com­ing in the half’s fi­nal half-minute, to knot the score at 2.

“We came in re­ally pumped up and a lit­tle bit ner­vous be­cause North­ern is al­ways our ri­val,” Ken­ley Zeruto said. “We were a lit­tle ner­vous in the first half. We were kind of shaky. We got the first two goals, but then they came back. In the sec­ond half we re­ally picked it up.”

“We weren’t re­ally play­ing to our po­ten­tial in the first half,” Hunt­ing­town’s Emma Pike said. “Once we had our talk at half­time and got into the sec­ond half, we played field hockey like we’re sup­posed to. We picked it up.”

After head coach Shan­non Per­sec­tic’s mo­ti­va­tional speech at half­time, the Hur­ri­canes dom­i­nated the sec­ond half.

Emma Schiemer got things rolling with a pair of tal­lies within the first 10 min­utes of the sec­ond half to put the hosts back in front and give them a 4-2 cush­ion. Ken­ley Zeruto fol­lowed with a goal, while Emma Pike then de­liv­ered a pair of her own to push the lead to 7-2. Alexa Zeruto later tacked on her sec­ond of the game, while Re­becca Yoder capped the scor­ing

with the Hur­ri­canes’ ninth goal.

“They’re our ri­vals so we kind of went out a tad bit cocky,” Hunt­ing­town’s Ar­i­ana Smith said. “We al­ways go out cocky, but after they scored two goals we could have pre­vented we just started play­ing the sport we love to play. We started play­ing like a team, give-and-gos, and we got back.

“I think after North­ern called their sec­ond time out we re­al­ized that we need to come as one and we could take them. They were just an­other team to get past.”

Hunt­ing­town was sched­uled to travel to Great Mills on Thurs­day and has a road game at Leonard­town on Tues­day next on the sched­ule, sched­uled for 6 p.m. North­ern was set to host Patux­ent on Thurs­day and will host Thomas Stone at 4 p.m. to­day.

“The game was pretty evenly matched dur­ing the first half, but Hunt­ing­town came out hun­gry for the win in the sec­ond half,” first-year North­ern head coach Co­raJo Toz­zolo said of the game. “I know they have a good pro­gram with strong play­ers, and that re­ally showed to­day. The out­come was not what we hoped for, but it was a good teach­ing mo­ment for our team. We know what we need to work on and we’ll be ready for our next game.”


Hunt­ing­town’s Ag­gie Gul­lace pre­pares to send the ball down­field dur­ing the Hur­ri­canes’ 9-2 win over the vis­it­ing North­ern Pa­tri­ots on Tues­day af­ter­noon.

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