For the second consecutive season, the Canton Girls Lacrosse Team was crowned Park champions, after an epic 11 – 10 overtime victory against an energized Plymouth team that came ready to play. In a titanic clash, often the case in all Park rivalry games, both teams played extremely hard, in a physical, chippy game, that had it’s own share of irregularities (such as a lengthy delay so the officials could debate a rule). The game was evenly played as the teams traded with each other goal for goal, and run for run throughout the match. The first half ended in a 4 to 4 tie, and the second half saw Canton storm out to a 9 – 7 lead, only to have Plymouth counter and square the game at 9 with 6:16 to play. It looked like Canton would win the game in regulation when Lexi Villarini scored from a tremendous assist by Canton senior captain, Katelyn Waligora with 1:06 to play. However, Plymouth had other ideas and Wildcat Reese Oberski stunned the Chiefs with a late goal with 0:21 left on the clock. The excitement wasn’t quite done however, as Canton made one last effort to end the game, Plymouth’s defensive standout Madeline Percy made a tremendous individual effort to win a ground ball and send the game into overtime.
In the overtime periods, the game was decided by the lone extra time goal scored by Katelyn Waligora, which put the determined Chiefs up 11 – 10 at 2:03 of the first overtime session. After gaining the lead, the Canton defense closed the door, led by the frenetic play of senior captain Jenna Anheuser, who created 3 turnovers for the Chiefs in the final minutes of play to help seal the victory.
As always with any Park rivalry tilt, the talent on display for both teams was abundant and included the following:
Plymouth: Jillian Koviak (4 goals) was a firecracker and handful for the Chiefs defenders all night playing with great determination; Zoe Weber (3 goals) and her quick shots was dangerous all evening; the Wildcat defense led by stalwart Madeline Percy challenged Canton’s prospective scorers with strength and tenacity, and Wildcat goalie Riya Mehta was brilliant on the evening with several spectacular saves.
Canton: the offensive trio of Isabelle Plave (3 goals), Lexi Villarini (3 goals) and Katelyn Waligora (3 goals, the game winner, 2 assists) were outstanding on the evening. Katelyn Waligora was a constant threat who had to be accounted for all night, and always answered the call when Canton needed a goal. Plave has flurished in her role as a deadly sniper for the Chiefs over the past few games and has shown how potent a quick, accurate shot can be. Villarini was all over the field and had the same impact on the Wildcat defenders, Koviak caused for the Chiefs. On the defensive side of the field, Jenna Anheuser (6 ground balls, 4 takeaways) led a tenacious Canton defense that played with a lot of heart and closed out the game when it counted. Between the pipes, Canton netminders Grace Coyne and Savina Osann stood tall in the goal. Both made 3 saves a piece, won ground balls and distributed the ball exceptionally, often bailing out their defense.
With the victory the Chiefs improved on the season to 10 – 7 and look to further their wins with a match Monday at Bedford High School.