Bucs Roll Into State Tour­ney

Kauf­man sets school sin­gle-sea­son goals mark, as team wins sixth re­gion cham­pi­onship in a row

The Kent Island Bay Times - - Sports - By WIL­LIAM HAUFE bhaufe@star­dem.com

STEVENSVILLE — Celina Kauf­man wasn’t given a heads-up about the mile­stone.

And even af­ter the Kent Is­land High se­nior stand­out’s six-goal per­for­mance gave her a new school sin­gle-sea­son record for goals at 34, Kauf­man wasn’t tak­ing credit, but pass­ing it around.

“It feels re­ally good,” Kauf­man said. “But I re­ally couldn’t have done it with­out the girls on the team. I mean a goal doesn’t come with­out an as­sist. An as­sist doesn’t come with­out a clear. So it re­ally just means so much to me that the whole team helped me work to­ward this.”

Kauf­man and com­pany con­tin­ued work­ing to­ward an­other stateti­tle shot Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon, piec­ing to­gether a 14-0 vic­tory over Calvert for Kent Is­land’s sixth con­sec­u­tive Class 2A South Re­gion field hockey cham­pi­onship.

The Buc­ca­neers (16-0) are sched­uled to meet Here­ford in a 7 p.m. Class 2A state semi­fi­nal next Wed­nes­day at 7 p.m. at Paint Branch High School. Here­ford won the North Re­gion cham­pi­onship last night with a 1-0 vic­tory over North Har­ford.

“Kent Is­land is a won­der­ful team,” Calvert head coach Crys­tal Hill said. “They have beau­ti­ful pass­ing. They’re just at a whole other level. And if I wasn’t coach­ing (against) them, they’re re­ally en­joy­able to watch. You’ve just got to ap­pre­ci­ate the his­tory that they have and the skill they play with.”

What long­time Bucs head coach Jami Wilt may have ap­pre­ci­ated most on this sunny and breezy au­tumn af­ter­noon was her team’s in­ten­sity never seemed to wane, even af­ter tak­ing a 2-0 lead four min­utes into the game and ex-

pand­ing it to 7-0 by half­time.

“My main thing in a game like this is just play your game,” said Wilt af­ter the Bucs posted their most lop­sided vic­tory of the sea­son, and in their last six re­gion­alti­tle games. “Play the game that has got­ten you here, and ours has been our pass­ing game. All ev­ery­one has talked about is how well the girls com­mu­ni­cate and pass. If you’re pass­ing the ball it’s kind of hard for peo­ple to catch up to you.”

There was no catch­ing Kent Is­land on this day, as Emery Betcher (two goals) con­verted a pass from Mag­gie Sil­ver for a 1-0 lead just 2 min­utes, 44 sec­onds into the game. Less than two min­utes later, Sil­ver scored via Ella Kauf­man’s as­sist off a penalty cor­ner.

“We talked a lot about what you can gain from ev­ery game you play in,” Wilt said. “This was a great op­por­tu­nity for us to prac­tice our pass­ing; for us to work on our cor­ners. The only time we ever get to prac­tice cor­ners is dur­ing prac­tice, and our de­fense knows our cor­ners. So you don’t re­ally get to ex­e­cute them like you want to. So there is some­thing to be gained in ev­ery op­por­tu­nity.”

The Bucs had 13 op­por­tu­ni­ties to work on their penalty cor­ners in the first half, and had two more chances in the sec­ond half.

“The girls have sev­eral cor­ners,” Wilt said. “They seem to have the ones they fall back on over and over again. So it was a chance to try some dif­fer­ent ones, and I saw them do that. And that was re­ally nice be­cause I think it builds a lit­tle bit of con­fi­dence.”

By the time the open­ing 30 min­utes were com­plete, Kent Is­land had built a com­mand­ing 7-0 lead, as Ella Kauf­man and Celina Kauf­man each scored twice, Syd­ney Bar­low once, while Ri­ley Teng­wall picked up an as­sist on the first of Celina Kauf­man’s six goals.

“We are play­ing I feel the best that we’ve ever played,” Celina Kauf­man said. “I love this team be­cause it’s all about team­work. We fo­cus on pass­ing. We fo­cus on com­mu­ni­ca­tion. And our top thing is we love each other. That makes all the dif­fer­ence.”

It con­tin­ued mak­ing a dif­fer­ence in the sec­ond half, as Celina Kauf­man scored three goals over the first 12 min­utes, stretch­ing the lead to 10-0. Betcher net­ted her sec­ond goal with a lit­tle un­der 18 min­utes re­main­ing and Katie Abend­schoen made it a 12-0 cush­ion with 12:25 left.

It wasn’t un­til 15:17 re­mained that the Cava­liers (5-8) earned their first penalty cor­ner. And it wasn’t un­til 10:36 was left that Calvert got its first shot on goal — that com­ing on a penalty stroke by Mad­die Wojo.

“I was very wor­ried,” Kent Is­land se­nior goalie Ju­lia Abend­schoen said. “I’m al­ways wor­ried when I get put on the spot like that.”

Wojo fired and Ju­lia Abend­schoen moved to­ward the ball, and with a slight leap bat­ted it to the ground to pre­serve what even­tu­ally be­came Kent Is­land’s 12th shutout of the sea­son.

“I think it’s most im­por­tant to fo­cus on the ball be­cause that’s what you have to save,” Ju­lia Abend­schoen said. “Just blank ev­ery­thing else out and look at the ball.”

Celina Kauf­man eclipsed Ali McIn­tosh’s school sin­gle-sea­son goal-scor­ing mark of 33 set in 2008 with 7:13 re­main­ing when she slipped her fi­nal goal past Calvert goalie Grace Tisone.

“Celina is so fo­cused. She’s al­ways been so fo­cused,” Wilt said. “Of­fen­sively, Celina’s a pow­er­house for us.”

Bar­low capped the scor­ing with her sec­ond strike with 4:05 re­main­ing.

“I cheer on my team no mat­ter what side they’re on,” Ju­lia Abend­schoen said when asked how she stayed en­gaged while see­ing lit­tle pres­sure from Calvert. “If they are all the way on the other end line, I’m like, ‘Yeah, you got it. Shoot that ball in.’ Just con­stantly sup­port­ive.”

As she has been all sea­son, Kent Is­land’s se­nior goalie got plenty of sup­port from the de­fen­sive unit of Emily Fronzcek, Marissa Plumer, De­laney O’Brien and Cam­bell Beach.

“On the other side, I have Marissa and Emily Fronzcek who are my de­fense that have kept the ball on our side of the field,” Wilt said. “De­laney O’Brien has been my sweep all year and she does such a great job stay­ing low, and she was mov­ing the ball out­side all day to­day, which was fan­tas­tic. And Cam­bell Beach has stepped up. She was as mid­fielder on jayvee last year and she saw a need on de­fense and she said I want to try that, stepped in and has done a great job.”

PHO­TOS BY WIL­LIAM HAUFE

Kent Is­land High’s field hockey team poses with its cham­pi­onship plaque Wed­nes­day af­ter de­feat­ing Calvert, 14-0, for the Class 2A South Re­gion ti­tle.

Kent Is­land’s Celina Kauf­man, left, high-fives team­mate Ri­ley Teng­wall af­ter scor­ing one of her six goals.

Kent Is­land’s Emily Fronzcek (24) car­ries through the mid­field against Calvert’s Mad­die Wojo (8).

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