Photo by Colin MurphyRachel Spilker led a menacing defensive effort as Severna Park improved to 2-1 with a 15-3 defeat of Chesapeake on March 31.
Severna Park Girls Trounce Chesapeake, Start "Redemption" Season 2-1
Nothing lights the fire under a good team quite like a narrow loss to another good team.
Four days after falling 8-7 to Mount Hebron, the Severna Park girls lacrosse was sharp on both ends of the field in a 15-3 thumping of Chesapeake at Kinder Park on March 31.
Senior Sarah Elms led the way for the Falcons with five goals, while sophomore Maddie Brady scored four goals, Mallory Martel had two, and Claire Domshick, Alex Miller, Kailyn McCulloch and Brooke Atcheson all scored one to power Severna Park to the win.
Coach Kaitlyn Hines said the team sought to improve on its possession after failing to make the most of its chances against Mount Hebron, the only girls lacrosse program in Maryland with more state championships (15) than Severna Park (13).
“Possession was a huge one for us,” said Hines. “Coming off Mount Hebron, where we didn’t really do very well handling the ball, that was a huge factor and a big key for this game, just keep possession and get what we want. I’ve been preaching to them the last few days of practice, take care of the ball and make sure our passes are sharp.”
The possession came fast and the scoring was furious in the opening minutes of the game, when goals by Elms, Brady, Domshick, Miller and Martel pushed the Falcons out to a 9-0 lead midway through the first half. Sophomore Hailey Blachley and Miller ensured continuing Severna Park possession by controlling four and three draws, respectively. While the offense tilted the scoreboard quickly in Severna Park’s favor, even when the Falcons were without the ball, a talented Chesapeake offense was frustrated to no end by Severna Park’s relentless defense. The menacing, almost attack-minded defense of Rachel Spilker, Caroline Millenburg, Molly Carr and Kate Bray blew up multiple Chesapeake sets with hounding pursuit and stick checks. Goalkeeper Mandy Rumsey made six saves in her limited chances, and Kelli Kazmarek came on late to get a save.
Spilker intercepted three passes, scooped up five ground balls and was an incessant thorn in the side of the Cougars.
“I feel like coming off a loss we had a lot of energy, and we didn’t want to feel that way again,” said Spilker. “So we just brought it all out and worked as a unit really well, and it came together.”
Asked how much her conditioning and defense in lacrosse was boosted by her recent basketball season — Spilker was a spark plug off the bench for the Lady Falcons this winter and a three-sport athlete who also plays soccer — she responded enthusiastically.
“So much,” she said. “My footwork and being able to read with my hands has improved so much through basketball season and getting to work on that.”
With the season only in its first weeks, the memories of last season are still fresh. The Lady Falcons fell in the playoffs to Broadneck last year, and they have a mind to set things right this spring.
“Our word this year is ‘redemption,’” said Elms, a senior who helped the Falcons to state championships in 2014 and 2015. “We’ve been working on everything we didn’t do well last year, each person contributing an even amount so we have multiple threats on the team. Coming off that loss last year, we feel like that made us stronger as a team, making everyone want to win and be the best team in our county and the best one to make it to the states game and get the win.”