Panthers ready for Final Four challenge

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HOOSICK, N.Y. — Ten years later, she's back.

Hoosick Falls field hockey coach Denise Campbell made her last appearance in the state semifinals in 2009. Now, the Panthers return and facing one of their biggest challenges to date — four-time Class C defending champion Whitney Point, who come in 16-2 on the year.

The two powerhouses will meet at 3 p.m. Saturday at Williamsville North High School, just outside of Buffalo.

The teams are a lot alike. Hoosick Falls has outscored opponents 89-9 this season as they remain unbeaten at 20-0.

Offensively, they are led by Lillian Hickey, a senior who leads the team with 33 goals this year, but there are many different options offensively, including eighth-grader Catherine Kennedy, who has nine goals this year, or Ayla Fauler, who scored the winning and only goal in the regional against Section I's Pawling.

The second-leading scorer is eighth-grader Emma McCart, who has 13 tallies, including the winning goal in the Class C sectional final against Johnstown. Madelyn Kasulinous is another threat around the goal with 11 tallies this season.

Defensively, the Panthers are led by Katie Weeden in the stopper position and Zoe Gress in goal.

Gress and the defense have pitched six straight shutouts and overall have 12 clean sheets on the year. Only once this season has a team scored more than a single goal in a game against the Panthers.

Whitney Point lost to Greene twice this season, but have run off eight straight victories heading into Saturday's contest.

They beat Section III's Camden in the regional to advance to the Final Four.

They are led by seniors Leanne Bough and Amy Stevens, both of whom have won three straight Class C titles for the Eagles. But the leading scorer is Brenna Bough, an eighth-grader, who has 19 goals and six assists this year. Leanne Bough has 16 tallies, while Stevens has 14. Fifteen different players have scored goals for Whitney Point.

If the Panthers can get past Whitney Point, they'd play on Sunday for a chance at their first state title since 1991. They would face the winner between Section VI's Barker and Section VIII's Carle Place.


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