MAU offense on a roll
BENNINGTON >> After an overtime loss on Saturday against Mount Greylock, the Mount Anthony girls lacrosse team made a concerted effort to shake it off and keep moving forward.
The Patriots have done that with rousing success.
Facing Hartford on Wednesday afternoon, the Patriots scored 11 first-half goals en route to a 17-2 blowout to improve to 3-1 on the year.
It was the second game in a row that MAU has scored double-digit goals in the opening 25 minutes after defeating Wahconah with a 10-goal first half.
"After the loss against Greylock, it's always good to have a game like this to work on things to build our confidence back up," said MAU coach Whitney Brooks. "The last two games since then have been a success for us."
Senior captain Bridget Ahearn led the Patriots with four goals, while junior Emily Altland and freshman Avery Galle each added three in the rout.
Mount Anthony scored in the first 30 seconds, a goal from Galle, and turned it up from there, eventually scoring the first nine in a row.
The next two were Ahearn's goals and then Riley Mintrone added her sole goal of the day for a 4-0 lead less than five minutes in. Brianna Zipprich joined the scoring party next before Altland scored the first of her three goals on the afternoon.
Alex Cross added a score with 15:36 left in the first half to make it 7-0 and Altland scored again with 12 minutes to go on a free position shot before Ahearn made it 9-0 with a sweet move around the Hartford defense.
"In a game like this, we could practice plays, get players in and have different ones score," Brooks said. "We were able to work on the fundamentals and that really helped us."
Hartford's Morgan Pero broke the shutout with 8:06 left in the first half, but MAU ended the half strong with two more tallies, one from Cross and the first varsity goal from freshman defender Zoe Lang to give the Patriots a 11-1 lead.
"Zoe is usually a defender, but she asked if she could play offense, so we put her on offense and she shined," Brooks said. "She's willing to play both sides [of the ball] and to have a player her age that wants to play both, that's eye-opening and really great teamwork."
Ahearn started the second half just like the first, scoring off an assist from Altland in the first two minutes, her fourth goal of the contest.
"A lot of the girls look up to Bridget and the other captains, she's able to control and settle it and they look to her," Brooks said. "She's a really good role model for the team, especially with it being so young. Our captains [Ahearn, Claire Taub and Munroe Ports] are amazing and the younger kids are learning a lot."
Galle, Altland and Ahearn all scored once more in the first 10 minutes of the second half. and the final two scores came from Lang and one from Taylor Andrews.
The Patriots were just as strong on the defensive end as well, with junior goalie Carly Plaisance earning the win in net with five saves.
"On defense, we put in some girls that hadn't played [there] and they shined," Brooks said. "Good defense is all about communication, you have to talk on defense. Carly has had so many saves in the past three, four games that he self-confidence has gone up as well. It's hard to be a goalie because it's a 1-on-1 thing, but she communicates really well with the defense. She's not just a goalie, she's part of the defense as well."
Mount Anthony has a week off now before hosting Woodstock on April 27.
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