OT Win Propels Field Hockey to Next Round

Tori Thistle slapped the ball to the left of the Fenwick goalie with 5:47 to go in sudden death overtime Saturday at Phillips Park.


Overtime rules for high school field hockey mandate that each team place four fewer players on the field, running seven instead of the 11 who ran during regulation.

In overtime, the first team to score wins.

The running ended in Saturday's overtime tournament game between Swampscott, 12-2-2, and Bishop Fenwick, 8-7-3, at Phillips Park after junior Tori Thistle knocked the ball to the right of the goalie and into the box.

"It just went in at the corner," said Tori after the game. "It almost hit the post."

The goal came after almost 10 minutes of exhausting back-and-forth play, the teams trading runs at each others end.

The goal sparked jubilation on the Big Blue side and deflated the hopes of No. 11 seed Fenwick, which had been playing inspired field hockey both in the tournament and the game.

The win sends No. 3 seed Swampscott to the semifinals of the North Div. 2 sectionals against No. 2 seed Manchester-Essex, 16-1-1.

The game will be played at Reading, the date and time to be announced,

On Saturday when regulation play ended at Phillips Park, the Fenwick players had momentum.

They appeared excited, energized and ready to charge up and down the field in the tiring overtime period.

Huddled at the sideline with her squad, Swampscott Coach Toby Channen implored the players to summon their energy and give every bit of effort they had to give, emotion bolted to her voice.

"Leave it on the field," she growled. 

Earlier in the overtime, Fenwick was close to leaving the field with a win, taking shots right in front of the Swampscott goal.

At one point the Swampscott coach's hands flew to her head upon a Fenwick shot at point-blank range.

One of the Fenwick players raised her stick anticipating a goal.

The Swampscott bench sighed relief as the ball traveled wide of the net.

Shortly thereafter Swampscott made its run to the Fenwick goal and registered the win.

Swampscott's Danielle Mayblum scored the first goal of the game. It was in the first half. 

Fenwick's Erinn Johnson scored the tying goal, also in the first half.

On the game winner, Tori Thistle was trailing the play, hustling to the Fenwick goal to keep the drive alive.

Her coach said after the game that Tori is a text-book athlete. She knows what is going on around her and her role.

Her strong point, however, is not endurance.

The overtime goal stopped the running and sent the Swampscott bench streaming on to the field.

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