Tag Archives: Deidre McElhinney

Newburyport stays undefeated with exciting 58-54 win at Pentucket

Newburyport celebrates a rare win over Pentucket

Mackenzie Currie (18 points) heads into the heart of the Newburyport defense

(West Newbury MA) Pentucket doesn’t lose very often at home, or anywhere else, for that matter.

But the visiting Newburyport Clippers got that rare feat done, 58-54, on Wednesday night.

Both teams were undefeated and had large-margin wins over everyone else in the Cape Ann League.

“It was the win of the season for us,” said Newburyport senior Abigail Gillingham (10 points) afterwards. “They don’t expect anyone to come in here and give them a hard time.  We had the mindset that this was our game, and no one was going to take it away from us.”

Both teams were aggressive on offense (taking the ball to the basket) and defense.  There was never a chance that the 30-second shot clock would be used.

Two Mackenzie Currie free throws put the Sachems (7-1) ahead by two, 52-50, with 1:18 left.

“I thought we had enough to win,” said Pentucket coach John McNamara, “after we got the lead but give them credit, they knocked down free throws.”

Not only did Newburyport make free throws (eight in the final forty-four seconds) but even when they missed, they were able to immediately get the ball back and produce points.

Senior Leah Metsker (9 points) made her first attempt, missed the second but got her own rebound and earned two more free throws.  She made both and the Clippers led, 53-52.

Leah Metsker shoots a free throw

After a Pentucket turnover, Deidre McElhinney (11 points) was fouled.  She made the first, missed the second, but the Sachems lost the rebound out of bounds.

Deidre McElhinney shoots free throws

More chances followed for Newburyport at the line.  Leah Metsker made both and now the Clippers were up four, 56-52, with ten seconds left as the game got away from Pentucket.

Deidre McElhinney guarded by Greta Maurer

“I’m glad I could make some clutch shots,” said Leah.  “I tried hard to focus because the gym was so loud.”

“It was such a relief that we could finish it out,” added Deidre.

“Props to Leah and Deidre for making their free throws at the end,” added Abigail Gillingham.

Part of Pentucket’s defensive strategy was limit Abigail’s touches.

“We focused on her and gave up shots to other kids instead,” explained Coach McNamara, “but some of those kids made shots.”

Abigail Gillingham (10 points) guarded by Mackenzie Currie

Abigail didn’t even touch the ball for the first four minutes of the game.

Credit Mackenzie Currie for the tough defense on the NHS top scorer although she had plenty of help from nearby teammates.

Mackenzie led all scorers with eighteen points.  The Pentucket senior (going to St. Joe’s next year) hit two 3’s and went hard to the basket even against multiple defenders.

Sophomore Abby Dube tallied fourteen points including three 3’s.  Her last three was part of a seven-point run in the final quarter that gave Pentucket the 52-50 lead.

A key contributor for NHS was sophomore Jackie Doucette (12 points).  Jackie had a couple of three’s, as well as a full-court drive.

Newburyport coach Karen Grutchfield: “It was a nice team win.  I am so happy for Leah.  Shooting under those circumstances is hard, but she did it.  I thought that Emma (Foley) did a good job rebounding and scoring.”

It certainly didn’t help Pentucket to lose their top scorer (Arielle Cleveland) four minutes into the game.

Pentucket coach John McNamara

“Despite not having Arielle available, we still had a chance to win and didn’t,” added Coach McNamara.

Newburyport had lost seven straight to Pentucket dating back to February of 2017.

“We’re so excited to finally beat them,” said Leah.

The Clippers had only four turnovers in the second half while the Sachems had nine.

Jackie Doucette: “We’ve been preparing for Pentucket for a while.  We had a good idea of what they would do.”

Impressed with Pentucket sophomore Audrey Conover.  First time I’ve seen her play.

One of the advantages for coaches is that all of the Cape Ann League games are being filmed for the excluded public.  No need to do any in-person scouting.

Easy to imagine how noisy it would have been if folks could have attended.

Pentucket box

Newburyport box

The coverage of this game will be linked on Twitter (@mcclellandpeter) and be on my McClelland Miscellanea online blog.  Hoping to get it posted on Mascores too.  Pictures should show up on Instagram (@mcclellandmiscellanea).

All of the pictures above and below will enlarge if you click on them.

Lana Mickelson

Jackie Doucette (12 points)

Deidre McElhinney breaks after a steal

Greta Mauer

Gabby Bellacqua, Abby Dube, Makenna Ward

Gabby Loughran

Deidre McElhinney passes out of a double-team

Abby Dube (14 points)

Mackenzie Currie

Audrey Conover and Deidre McElhinney

Emma Lopata

Deidre McElhinney

Mackenzie Currie puts Pentucket up by two

Jackie Doucette (12 points) shoots from long range

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Undefeated Newburyport defeats Amesbury 46-18 led by Abigail Gillingham’s 20 points

Newburyport Clippers are undefeated after six games

Amesbury’s Avery Hallinan (11) looks for someone to pass to.

Abigail Gillingham (20 points)

(Newburyport MA) This was not a good matchup.

Amesbury was overwhelmed by Newburyport, 46-18, on Tuesday night at NHS.

The Indians faced undefeated Newburyport with only three days of practice, thanks to a ruling by the Amesbury School Committee.

The Clippers, now 6-0, could easily be the best team in the Cape Ann League.  They have been together for weeks and their play on both ends of the court shows it.

In this game, Newburyport passed its way to high percentage shots while defending Amesbury into low percentage shots.

Abigail Gillingham (20 points) was a game-long problem for the Indians.  Neither their perimeter defense nor their inside defense was effective enough to slow down the Clippers.

Avery Hallinan tries to cover Abigail Gillingham in close

“Abigail Gillingham was very good tonight,” admitted Amesbury coach Gregg Dollos afterwards, “but we didn’t battle the post.  We gave her all the positioning she wanted.”

Even when the Clippers missed shots in close there were teammates on hand to cash rebounds.

“Abigail did a great job of getting her body in the paint and we made really good passes to her,” said NHS coach Karen Grutchfield post-game.

Amesbury’s defensive struggles on the interior eliminated Newburyport’s need to rely on long-range shots and they took very few.

The Clippers gained separation 24-12 at halftime and Abigail had fifteen of Newburyport’s points.

Clippers interior defense

The Clippers defense truly made things tough for the visitors later on and they could only get six points in the entire second half. There were very few clean looks from anyplace for the Indians all night long.

“Our defense is the key to everything we do,” explained Abigail afterwards.  “Amesbury had trouble with our 1-2-2 press.”

“Our passing wasn’t good at all,” explained Coach Dollos.  “There were just too many individual things going on out there.”

It all came down to a well-organized team facing a team just getting used to being together.

Block by Liv DeLong

The Indians have two days to prepare for their home opener Friday versus Lynnfield. The time together should help them to improve.

“Amesbury has good kids and they’re physical,” said Coach Grutchfield.  “We were fortunate to catch them when we did.”

Deidre McElhinney had nine points for Newburyport while Avery Hallinan paced the Indians with ten points.

Newburyport box

Amesbury box

Interesting to see Amesbury’s Alyssa Pettet trying basketball her senior year.  She’ll be playing soccer for Holy Cross in the fall.

Newburyport seniors

Newburyport’s two seniors (Abigail Gillingham & Leah Metsker) were honored after the game.

This story/pictures will appear on my online blog (McClelland Miscellanea).  The link to the game with be on Twitter (mcclellandpeter).  Mascores has also been posting my entries.  There should be pictures showing up on Instagram (McclellandMiscellanea) over the next few days.

(All of the pictures above and below should enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Newburyport triple-team

Alyssa Pettet gets to the basket

Gabby Redford tied up by Gabby Loughran and Makenna Ward

Jackie Doucette guards Gabby Redford

Abigail Gillingham jump shot in the lane

Deidre McElhinney (9 points) to the rim

Leah Metsker

Liv DeLong guards Abigail Gillingham

Mary Bullis

Metskers

Gillinghams

 

 

 

 

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Newburyport overwhelms Lynnfield early getting 61-29 win

Anna Affolter was part of a tight Newburyport defense

The Clippers turned missed Lynnfield shots into fast break opportunities.

Deidre McElhinney (13 points) led all scorers.

(Newburyport MA) Impressive performance by the Clippers.

Undefeated Newburyport (4-0) dazzled in every aspect of the game and routed Lynnfield, 61-29, on Wednesday night at NHS.

The Clippers smothered the winless Pioneers (0-3) defensively from the get-go and were about as good on offense as you can get.

“We came out strong,” said NHS high scorer Deidre McElhinney afterwards in what could well have been the understatement of the year!

The Clippers scored the first eleven points of the game and may not have missed a shot during the hot start.

By the end of the first quarter, seven different Clippers had contributed points and NHS was in control, 24-5.

Leah Metsker and Riley Hallahan

“Once we started making shots, we gained more confidence,” explained senior Leah Metsker.

Four of the NHS baskets were on offensive rebound conversions.  Three came on 3-point shots, while another was off a turnover that high scorer Deidre McElhinney (13 points) turned into a layup.

“A lot of us were on tonight,” added Deidre in yet another understatement.

Sophomore Jackie Doucette told me post-game, “I wasn’t really on tonight,” yet she still ended up with eleven points.

Clippers coach Karen Grutchfield was pleased with the way things went: “I thought they did great.  Our whole focus was defensive pressure and out of that pressure we got transition points.”

The Clippers seemed to have the right answers for each defense the Pioneers tried.

Abigail Gillingham (8 points) shoots over the Lynnfield defense

Against Ipswich, Newburyport struggled with the visitor’s zone defense.  Not tonight.  Plenty of good passes including cross-court ones that turned up high-percentage looks.  Even on misses, the Clippers size and positioning resulted in nine rebound baskets.

Impressive show, to say the least.

Credit Lynnfield for never giving up despite falling behind by as many as thirty-five (56-21) early in the final quarter.

“They were taller than us and played great,” said Lynnfield coach Jeannine Cavallaro afterwards referencing Newburyport.  “You get down by twenty early, it’s hard to come back.”

Tight Clippers defense on the inside kept two of Lynnfield’s Cape Ann League All-Stars (Caroline Waisnor & Grace Klonsky) on the perimeter and shut down the driving lanes for them.  They were each limited to four points.

Caroline Waisnor on defense

“We got some decent looks,” added Coach Cavallaro, “but our offense has been stagnant so far.”

Sophomore Isabella George led the Pioneers with ten points.

Abigail Gillingham (8), Emma Foley (8), and Sydney Turner (7) added points for Newburyport.

I thought that the individual defense of Anna Affolter and Makenna Ward on Grace Klonsky was excellent.

The early score-separation gave both coaches opportunity to give everyone plenty of playing time.  “We have plenty of depth,” said Coach Grutchfield, “and we don’t lose a lot when we substitute.  Our scoring was spread out (nine players scored) and I like that.”

Newburyport lost twice to Lynnfield last year.  “We remembered last year,” said Deidre.

Lynnfield coach Jeannine Cavallaro

The Pioneers have certainly gone through some changes since last year’s 13-7 season.  The Morelli sisters graduated.  CAL All-Star Cate MacDonald (averaged 12 rebounds per game) transferred to New Hampton Prep.  Three players are out with injuries. And they have a new coach.

“We’re missing players,” said Coach Cavallaro, “and we’ve been quarantining it.  So we’re behind but that’s no excuse.  You have to come out and play.”

Grace Klonsky is committed to Denison while Caroline Waisnor will join the Endicott Gulls this fall.

The good start by Newburyport bodes well for their schedule ahead.  “If we start the way we did tonight, we’ll be in good shape the rest of the way,” said Deidre McElhinney.

The other two CAL games I have covered have been posted on Mascores and this one should be also.  The link to my blog (McClelland Miscellanea) will be on Twitter (@mcclellandpeter) will be on Twitter.  I also hope to get pictures on Instagram (Mcclellandmiscellanea).

(All of the pictures above and below should enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Gabby Loughran pressures Maggie Ozanian

Olivia McDonald in denial defense

Elizabeth Metsker defends Riley Hallahan

Anna Affolter tries to guard Grace Klonsky

Loose ball

Grace Klonsky guarded by Makenna Ward

Jackie Doucette (11 points)

Caroline Waisnor

Emma Foley (8 points)

Battle on the boards

Deidre McElhinney in for two

Makenna Ward guards Grace Klonsky

Ava Buonfiglio, Deidre McElhinney, and Maggie Ozanian

Livia Tare

 

 

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Ipswich finds enough defense to hold Newburyport to 0-0 tie in Cape Ann League girls soccer

Allie Waters and Lauryn Whynott battle for control.

Maddy Farris was busy in the Ipswich net

(Newburyport MA) I don’t know the last time Ipswich girls soccer tied or won a game against Newburyport.

I do know from Mascores that the last time the Tigers scored a goal against the Clippers was in 2012.

Ipswich didn’t end the scoring drought tonight, but they did play enough defense to earn a 0-0 tie with Newburyport.

“Newburyport is a good team,” said Ipswich coach Dave Wood afterwards, “and this is a great result for us.”

Dana Farardeau defends Anna Affolter

Things weren’t so upbeat on the Newburyport side post-game.

“We had plenty of chances especially early, but we just didn’t finish,” said NHS coach Kevin Sheridan.

Just three minutes into the game the Clippers (4-2-3) had a sequence with four quality shots and no return.  Credit Ipswich goalie Maddy Farris for being where she needed to be during the barrage of NHS shots.

“Their goalie was very good,” said Coach Sheridan.  “She stopped some crosses and she also was able to hold onto some long-range high shots.”

Over and over senior Allie Waters facilitated Newburyport setups by getting by Ipswich defenders and finding teammates for good looks.  She also had several quality shots on net.

Allie Waters and Carter King

But that first goal never came for the home team.

And because the Tigers (3-4-2) survived the first half they gained confidence and did a better job of limiting the NHS scoring chances in the second half.

“We could have gone into the second half up 2-0,” explained Coach Sheridan.  “It would have been a different game in the second half if that had happened.”

But it didn’t happen, and the Tigers were able to put some shots on Newburyport’s second-half goalie Gabby Loughran.  Lauren Waters and Carter King had the best chances.

The Clippers never stopped having chances but on this extremely cold (30’s & windy) Monday evening they couldn’t finish.

Izzy Kirby and Colby Filosa

“We did have some chances in the second half,” recalled Coach Wood.  “We finally started working the ball to the outside and then across.  We just didn’t get on the end of any of them.”

Some of that Ipswich offense was generated by senior Lauren Waters.  “It was a great last away game for her.”

Ipswich will close with Amesbury at home on Wednesday.

Coach Wood cited the defense of Lauryn Whynott: “It was her best game all year.  She was aggressive and she was willing to carry the ball out of the back which she’s not always willing to do.  She had faith in her first touch.  They gave her space, and she took advantage of it.”

This was a game in which there appeared to be plenty of open space in the middle of the field.  Allie Waters, Deidre McElhinney, and Carter King found opportunities to flash some nifty dribbling skills in those spaces.

Deidre McElhinney

Coach Sheridan: “We had some quality play tonight.  It just didn’t result in a goal.  We have a great group and I’m super proud of them.  I want them to finish the season on a high note on Wednesday against Lynnfield.”

Junior Katie Gallagher may have had the best Clippers scoring opportunity early in the second quarter.  The strong-footed defender blasted a long kick just under the crossbar, but Ipswich GK Maddy Farris jumped to snag it.

The cold in this game was real.  Add a steady wind to the low temps and only the truly committed lasted the whole game.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

This story will appear on my McClelland Miscellanea blog and the link will be on my Twitter account (McClellandPeter).  Individual pictures will show up on Instagram (McClellandMiscellanea).

Carter King chased by Allie Waters

Lucy Harmon and Shannon Harrington

Katie Gallagher between Lauren Waters and Olivia Novello

Allie Waters chased by Dana Falardeau and Jennie Tarr

Lauryn Whynott

Allie Waters defended by Jennie Tarr

Lauren Waters chased by Anna Affolter

Katie Gallagher and Colby Filosa

Carter King

 

 

 

 

 

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GK Julia Campbell stars in Amesbury’s 1-0 win over Newburyport

Senior Julia Campbell earned a shutout against Newburyport this morning.

GK Julia Campbell

(Amesbury MA) Senior goalkeeper Julia Campbell has not played much for Amesbury.

Blame graduated Cape Ann League MVP Alli Napoli for that.

However, although Julia didn’t play often, she did get to face Newburyport several times because of injuries to Alli.

“I’ve played them quite a few times and I knew their offense really well,” said Julia post-game.

Julia’s goalkeeping turned out to be a key for the Indians (2-0) as they defeated Newburyport, 1-0, on a sunny, windy Saturday morning of soccer at Landry Stadium in Amesbury.

“We don’t win this without Julia,” admitted Amesbury coach Adam Thibodeau afterwards.  “She earned that shutout today especially in the first half.”

Avery Hallinan’s goal celebrated

Defender Avery Hallinan struck the game-winner for the Indians in the third quarter.

The Clippers (1-1) started the game with a double-team on CAL All-Star Alyssa Pettet and the (substantial) wind to their backs.

Both factored significantly early on.

It was 6 ½ minutes before Alyssa actually touched the ball.

It was eleven minutes before Amesbury could even get the ball into the Newburyport side of the field.

That’s dominance………..but the Clippers didn’t score.

Allie Waters and Riley Doherty

“We had more chances and more possessions early,” said Newburyport coach Kevin Sheridan.  “We just didn’t capitalize.”

A number of the good Newburyport looks were shot over the net, certainly influenced by the strong winds.

The teams changed ends after the first quarter, which didn’t happen last game I was at.  It gave Amesbury the favorable wind.

Now it was Newburyport GK Anneliese Truesdale’s chance to face pressure.  And she faced it well.

Amesbury’s MK McElaney had a golden chance after a rebound in that 2nd quarter but Anneliese dove to stop an in-close shot.  Later, Anneliese was out of the net to beat McKenna Hallinan to a dangerous ball.

GK Anneliese Truesdale robs MK McElaney

“Anneliese is fearless,” said Coach Sheridan.

Gabby Loughran replaced Anneliese in the second half.

“We made some adjustments at halftime,” explained Coach Thibodeau.  “We wanted to fill the middle better.  They were taking away our immediate scoring threats, so we looked to get the ball to our 2nd and 3rd layer of players.”

That strategy paid off in the third quarter.

“I got a rebound off of a Newburyport player and dribbled in closer,” said junior defender Avery Hallinan discussing her goal.  “I had an opening, and their goalie was a little bit out, so I took the shot.  It dipped just under the crossbar.”

GK Gabby Loughran leaps for Avery Hallinan’s high shot.

“Two players dove at her and she got around them for the shot,” recalled Coach Sheridan.  “We needed to be containing there.”

That goal, at 12:29 of the 3rd quarter, spelled trouble for the Clippers.

Why?  The Indians switched into a defensive mode and moved Alyssa Pettet (Holy Cross commit) back as a defender.

“We knew that she (Alyssa Pettet) would go to defense if they scored,” said Coach Sheridan.  “She is a high-quality player.”

Alyssa was happy with the switch: “I feel more natural playing defense.”

A key to Alyssa being on defense was her ability to make long kicks, especially on goal kicks, that relieved pressure on Amesbury.

Maddie Felts shadows Alyssa Pettet

GK Julia Campbell was also happy to have Alyssa on defense. “The wind was killing all my punts,” said Julia.  “Alyssa could actually kick the ball out.”

“We packed it in defensively in the second half and it kept Newburyport from getting good chances,” recalled Alyssa.

Julia Campbell: “Avery’s goal was beautiful.  She had the wherewithal to hold onto the ball as long as she could.  She saw an opening and took it.”

Coach Sheridan: “I thought we did a fairly good job of shutting down Alyssa Pettet.  Using her the way they did was a winning strategy for them.”

Continue to be impressed with Deidre McElhinney’s in-traffic skills.

There were a limited number of spectators at this game.  First time that’s happened.  I counted twenty-six of them in the second half.

I have no doubt that “real” soccer folks are being, or would be, driven crazy by the rules that are in play for soccer in Massachusetts.  The ever-blowing whistles are the most maddening part.  I had to agree with Amesbury’s Sydney Aldrich when she said as the game was going on, “The game is now like field hockey and lacrosse.”  BUT, and I have to keep reminding myself, they are playing!

Coach Adam Thibodeau and Katie Gallagher

Great rivalry between Newburyport and Amesbury.  The last two years it was 1-1 ties.  Before that it was a 1-0 Amesbury win and the two years before that Newburyport won by a 1-0 score.

This game story, with pictures will be posted my McClelland Miscellanea blog.  There will also be coverage posted on Twitter (McClellandPeter) and Instagram (McClellandMiscellanea).

All of the pictures will enlarge if you click on them.

Amesbury celebrates a win

Jackie Doucette, Calista Catarius, Izzy Kirby

loose ball

Alyssa Pettet shielded from the ball by Maddie Felts

Avery Hallinan and Liberty Palermino

Maddie Felts and Sydney Aldrich

Deidre McElhinney and Sarah Chace

Deidre McElhinney and Avery Hallinan

Sarah Chace defends Allie Waters

Calista Catarius and Gabby Waters

Molly Webster (19) shoots

Allie Waters and Gabby Smyth

Allie Waters and Riley Doherty

 

 

 

 

 

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Girls soccer happens! Newburyport 1 North Reading 0

Deidre McElhinney chased by Sophia Galuppo

Mattie DeFeo and Norah McElhinney celebrate Newburyport’s goal in the 3rd quarter

(Newburyport MA) “If we had to play with our shoes tied together, we probably would have,” according to Newburyport girls soccer coach Kevin Sheridan.

And that pretty well summed up the attitude of today’s participants.  Whatever it takes to play!

“We were just happy to be playing,” said North Reading coach Sean Killeen.  “The Cape Ann League and the principals have done a nice job to make it happen for the kids.”

I talked to both officials pre-game to get a sense of how the game might go.

One of them said that without tournaments and playoffs that the games this season would be more like “friendly” games.

The other official gave me a 3-page copy of the MIAA soccer rules for 2020.  “It will be an adjustment for us and the teams.  Several teams had scrimmages in which referees came in so that everyone could get used to the new rules.”

There actually was a lot of “normal” soccer played.  “I thought it went pretty well with all the rule changes,” added Coach Killeen.  “It looked like a regular soccer game for a lot of it.”

Samantha Magner chased by Norah McElhinney

Newburyport came away the winner, 1-0, on a sunny, Saturday afternoon in the season opener for both teams at Newburyport.

The games are now played in quarters instead of halves.

Mattie DeFeo’s goal in the third quarter spelled the difference.

The NHS senior had a long run toward the goal after an excellent outlet pass/set up by junior Katie Gallagher.

“The entry pass split my two central defenders,” recalled Coach Killeen.  “The scorer ended up with a good look and she put it where she needed to.”

Olivia Vasquez (5) watched by Katie Gallagher (22)

“Katie (Gallagher) had a monster game,” added Coach Sheridan.  “She played the entire game without any mask breaks.”

“The goal and the assist couldn’t have happened to two better kids, in my opinion,” said Coach Sheridan.

Coach Sheridan used a different goalie each half: “We have two great goalies (senior Anneliese Truesdale & sophomore Gabby Loughran) and both of them deserve to play.”

Both of the Clippers’ GK’s were called on to make tough saves.

“We never got too comfortable and that was to North Reading’s credit,” added Coach Sheridan.

Newburyport GK Gabby Loughran saves in front of Madison DiNapoli

Coach Killeen was disappointed that his Hornets didn’t collect any goals.  “We need to calm down a little bit in the finishing third.  As we build our chemistry, I think we’ll be in a good place.”

“It was a good start for us considering we’ve had no scrimmages,” said Coach Sheridan.  “We could have been better connecting on passes.  I thought we played better in the second half.”

Senior Julia Thorstad was solid in net for NR.

Senior Allie Waters is back playing for Newburyport this season.  Allie has already committed to playing at Holy Cross next season.  Next Saturday, at Amesbury, Allie will play against Alyssa Pettet who has also committed to Holy Cross in 2021.

Anne MacLellan (12) and Allie Waters (21)

Both Katie Gallagher and NR’s Katelyn Gorgenyi had threatening long-range shots in this game.

Coach Sheridan regarding sophomore Deidre McElhinney: “She plays with such poise and control in the middle of the field.”

Gabby Waters has joined the Clippers after playing at Berwick Academy previously.

The hardest rule change to get used to was the second whistle.  Soccer is usually free flowing, but that rule forced players to distance themselves before a 2nd whistle would blow resuming play.

Coach Killeen probably summarized the game atmosphere best: “The kids were good despite some confusion.  It was a lot of fun.”

Stehlin Stadium is an excellent place for a soccer game.  I was limited to the stands but even from there I could get a good look at the action.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

I will post the game story on McClelland Miscellanea.  I also plan to post pictures on my Instagram account (McclellandMiscelleanea).

Newburyport celebrates win

looking for control

collision course

Shot by Katelyn Gorgenyi (11)

Newburyport GK Gabby Loughran pressured by Madison DiNapoli

loose ball

Newburyport coach Kevin Sheridan

Julia Thorstad saves with Norah McElhinney nearby

Samantha Magner (9) and Molly Webster (19) in front of NR GK Julia Thorstad

Anna Affolter tries to get away from Samantha Magner

NR coach Sean Killeen at halftime

Madison DiNapoli (22) and Maddy Felts (15)

Marykate Lundy (17) tries to get control

Captains meet

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Cheyenne Nessinger scores 25 points but Newburyport defeats Danvers 48-37

Sadie Vandenberg tries to deny Cheyenne Nessinger (25 points) the ball

Abby Gillingham (12 points) shoots over Maddie Montanari

(Danvers MA) Cheyenne Nessinger was awesome tonight.

But Newburyport had the balance to offset Cheyenne’s big game and downed Danvers, 48-37, in the opening round of the Gieras Memorial Games.

The Clippers will face Reading in the title game tomorrow night.

Cheyenne had twenty-five points, twelve rebounds, and five blocks to literally carry Danvers on her back.

Cheyenne seemed as surprised as anyone regarding her special night: “I can’t explain the good game. We did have a shoot-around this morning and that probably helped.”

The Clippers (12-7) broke away from a close game (21-20) late in the first half while Cheyenne was on the bench.

While the Falons (10-9) went scoreless during the final 2 ½ minutes of the half, the Clippers put up nine straight points thanks to Deidre McElhinney (15 points) and Abby Gillingham (12 points).

Deidre’s part was a three and two free throws.

Deidre McElhinney (15 points) at the free throw line

Abby’s part was a jump shot (assist Jackie Doucette) and a nice put-back seconds before the halftime buzzer sounded.

Newburyport’s halftime lead was 30-20.

The Falcons were down 40-26 in the closing seconds of the third quarter but Sabrina Auciello drilled a three to give Danvers hope as they entered the final period.

Anna Affolter and Reese Pszenny

A free throw and a layup by Cheyenne Nesseinger and a layup by Kristina Yebba started things on a positive note for the Falcons in the final period. They were within six (40-34) with four minutes left.

The home team continued to stay close (43-37) with 1 ½ minutes left after Kristina Yebba dropped in a three-pointer.

But those would be the last points Danvers would score.

Key steal by Sami Cavanaugh along with a blocked shot by Makenna Ward protected the shrinking lead and helped earn the Clippers a win.

Newburyport had nine different players score points.

The Clippers guards were able to pressure the Danvers guards enough to limit their passes inside. That made perfect sense because it seemed that every time Cheyenne had the ball inside she scored.

Makenna Ward passes

Coach Crutchfield: “We had lots of contributions off the bench. Deidre had a good game tonight. Emma Foley helped us a lot off the bench. Makenna was composed and played tough defense.”

Deidre McElhinney: “We were looking for our offense tonight. When they got within six we had stop that run and end their momentum.”

Sami Cavanaugh: “I don’t think that the Danvers girl saw me. That was why I was able to steal it. I am committed to Holy Cross. I am interested in law. I expect to play club sports.”

This two-day tournament is the result of the love Danvers coach Pat Veilleux had for his friend Ed Gieras. Pat wanted to create a memory of his friend and has succeeded nicely.

Danvers box

Newburyport box

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Cheyenne Nessinger at the line

Cheyenne Nessinger was money in close

Deidre McElhinney defends

Deidre McElhinney in the middle of Falcons

Gabby Chisholm with the ball

Jackie Doucette gets a rebound

Jackie Doucette in a trap

Julia Vaillancourt and Anna Affolter

Sami Cavanaugh

Sami Cavanaugh and Makenna Ward reach in

Sydney Turner looks to pass

 

 

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Lynnfield wins six straight edging Newburyport 1-0

Numerous corner kicks by both teams set up trouble in the box for both teams.

Lynnfield celebrates at game’s end

(Newburyport MA) If you enjoyed rain and corner kicks you were at the right game.

Lynnfield (6-2-1) capitalized on one of their CK’s and that was enough to defeat Newburyport, 1-0, on a rainy Thursday afternoon of Cape Ann League girls soccer at Stehlin Field in Newburyport.

“It’s always tournament style when we play Newburyport,” said Pioneers coach Mark Vermont afterwards.

Lynnfield has defeated the Clippers (3-4-2) twice in 2019 and are currently on a six-game winning streak.

Ashley Mitchell set up teammate Anna Radulski on a corner kick

Eight days ago, the score in the Lynnfield/Newburyport contest was a misleading 4-1.  It was tied at halftime and the last two goals came as the Clippers flooded the offensive end trying to catch up.  “It was much closer than the score indicated,” recalled Coach Vermont.

That game, however, is important when discussing today’s game because what worked offensively for the Pioneers in that victory came back and worked again………..corner kick goal. The Pioneers had two CK’s in the first meeting.

“One corner kick was the difference today,” lamented NHS coach Kevin Sheridan post-game.  “Part of our scouting report on them was that they were super strong on corner kicks.  They get players in the box.  They come with good angles and they’re big kids.”

Sophomore Anna Radulski had the first goal off junior Ashley Mitchell’s corner kick in September 18th match.  Exact same thing happened today, although not only was it the first goal but it was the only one.

Anna got the goal with 7:49 left in the first half.

The CK will reach Anna Radulski (19) and result in a goal

Reaction to scored goal

The goal-resulting corner kick was from the left corner.  Ashley Mitchell’s kick was high, and it went over senior Molly Ozanian’s head (she tried to head it) and then reached Anna who had inside position on defender Matigan Felts.  Anna kicked the ball before it landed. There were Clippers defenders blocking goalie Anneliese Truesdale’s view and she had no chance to get in front of Anna’s shot as it went into the left corner.

Coach Sheridan on the Lynnfield goal: “We were a little too loose in our markings.  A girl got free.  She didn’t get a strong kick, but she was in the right position with good timing.”

And that one goal would hold up despite a plethora of opportunities for both teams.

Molly Webster (19) comes close

For Newburyport, Molly Webster had a header that went wide left.  Later, Sammy Cavanaugh broke in from the left and had a shot go just wide to the right.

For Lynnfield, Tori Morelli hit the sidebar on a header off a corner kick.  Later, a hard Lynnfield shot from the middle went through the wet gloves of GK Anneliese Truesdale and trickled just wide left.

“Anneliese was very good today,” said Coach Sheridan.  “She made a big save late in the game and she squeezed a couple out of the air early in the game with players in her face.”

Coach Sheridan also noted strong play in the midfield.  “Deidre (McElhinney) and Molly (Elmore) were great there.  The more they connect to each other the better the team goes. Ideally, every pass the team makes should have an intent.  We want to be a team that possesses the ball and builds an offense.”

Clippers’ shot goes wide past GK Amberly McCarter

The Pioneers were 12-5-3 last season and graduated only one player off that team.

“Lynnfield plays hard,” said Coach Sheridan.  “They get good body position on the ball and you’re always fighting to get around them.  They also do a nice job on set plays.”

Coach Vermont: “Corner kicks are what we work on and today we got a goal on a corner.  Anna (Radulski) made her run and the ball got to her.”

Coach Sheridan: “We’ve had a two-week stretch of playing good team after good team.  It’s a credit to the Cape Ann League.  There are no more easy games.  The quality of the CAL makes kids better.”

Lauren Braconnier (12) and Cricket Good (11)

Both Lynnfield and Newburyport are in Division Three.  “We’ll see what happens in the state tournament,” said Coach Sheridan.  They could face each other for a third time.

Today’s game started with sun but those who know a thing or two about weather had umbrellas with them.  On Newburyport’s Tuesday game at Amesbury I got caught umbrella-less and headed for home at halftime.  Today I noted the forecast, even though the sun was shining at the time, and had a small umbrella with me.  When it started raining in the first half, I was ready. At halftime I got a bigger umbrella and stayed for the whole game.  You gotta be prepared!

I continue to marvel at Stehlin Field with its turf and lights.  Today it starts to rain.  No puddles or ruined grass.  It gets a little dark.  On go the lights.  Nice place.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Olivia Coletti

Norah McElhinney (12), Emma Ricciardi (2), and Deidre McElhinney (8)

Tori Morelli

rainy conditions

Liz Sykes

Abby Lucich (9), Anna Radulski (19) and Emma Ricciardi (2)

Deidre McElhinney (8) and Lexi Veglia (13)

Ashley Mitchell

Anneliese Truesdale

Amberly McCarter

Lynnfield celebrates

 

 

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