Rye High Girls’ Lacrosse
Best Prep for Playoffs? Play Greenwich
By Melanie Cane
Coming up against Greenwich High’s top-notch, senior-laden team, the Garnets recognized they would need every “weapon” in their arsenal to come out on top. While the May 5 matchup didn’t go Rye’s way — they lost 13-9 — the Garnet girls played competitively and passionately throughout. “It was great preparation for the stretch run and playoffs,” said Coach Dennis Hurlie.
Less than a minute into the game, the Cardinals scored off the first draw. Rye won the next, but Greenwich stole the ball at Rye’s goal on a check and scored again. Greenwich won the next draw, but Garnet goalie Amelia Cunningham made a great save. Rye got off two shots that Greenwich goalie Sloane Loveless saved. The Cardinals netted another one before Leah Kenny found the back of the net to make it 3-1. Cunningham made another terrific save before Margaret Mitchell scored on a penalty shot.
The Cardinals scored again off a pass interference play and Shannon Lavelle scored on an in-bound play. Greenwich netted their next goal off a clear and Kenny answered on the next possession. The Cardinals responded with a shot off the draw. Kenny scored the final goal of the half, making it 6-5 Greenwich.
The Cardinals scored three successive goals to start the second half, before the Garnets answered with three of their own. Kenny beat the goalie; Shannon Lavelle scooted the ball around the goalie; and Mitchell scored on a penalty shot.
Greenwich scored off the draw and then again on a check steal to go up 11-8. Kenny tacked on one more before Greenwich scored two empty netters, at which point Hurlie pulled the goalie in order to go on full-attack mode.
Kenny ended the game with five goals, and Mitchell and Lavelle each had two. Cunningham had 11 saves.
Coach Hurlie was pleased with the team’s play on the draws. “We gave ourselves plenty of offensive possessions and that was due in large part to the work of Leah and Margaret on the draw. Amelia — as she has been all season — was outstanding in goal and made some terrific saves to keep us in it. Sara DeGraw came back after missing a couple of games due to injury and reminded everyone what a force she can be all over the field.” He added, “I was proud of the way we battled back a couple of times when it looked like the Cardinals were going to run away with it.”
Two days later, which happened to be Senior Night, Rye beat Eastchester 18-4, and Cunningham recorded her 300th save. They are 8-6 with two league games left in the season.
The game against Byram Hills on May 10, post-press time, will decide the league title. Playoffs begin May 17.
Catherine Egan running ball
Leah Kenny on the transition