(Newburyport) The Lady Clippers (11-4-4) took out the Bedford Buccaneers (9-5-4), 2-0, at cold, windy Cherry Hill Field on Monday afternoon in the first round of the Divsion 2 North state tournament.
The crosswinds didn’t seem to bother either team. I am not sure the spectators weren’t bothered, however.
Coach Robb Gonnam’s team (seeded #8) scored in each half but had to survive several golden Buc opportunities in the second half to advance.
The Buc’s (seeded #9) second half chances were thwarted by a combination of Bedford doorstep miskicks and the clutch saves of Clipper senior goalie Eleni Kacher. The Cape Ann League All-Leaguer survived some shaky moments before recording the shutout.
Another CAL All-Leaguer, junior Hannah Martin, drilled a long-range, left-footed rocket from the middle of the field over the head of the Bedford goalie after a pass from Amy Sullivan to break the scoreless deadlock in the first half.
Hannah was the best player on the field in my opinion. Her ability to use either foot was noticeable especially on goal kicks.
The Bucs had several near-goals in the second half (mentioned above) before Jaycie Triandafilou sealed things for the home team. A ball came across the goal from the left side to Jaycie on the right side. The freshman converted the in-close, open look at the Bedford goal.
In 2008 Newburyport got past Dual County Bedford on the same field on its way to the state championship.
Newburyport next plays the winner of #1 seed Belmont and Pentucket.
(All observations from this game are made without interviewing either coach or having access to stats at the game. I apologize in advance if there are any errors.)