AVON, Oct. 10 – The Avon High field hockey team won its first five games of the year and then got a week off due to rain and the Yom Kippur holiday.
Avon’s Caroline Schaefer, left, battles with Granby’s Mia Olsen for the ball in Monday’s game
Falcon coach Terri Ziemiecki took the opportunity to raise the level of play of her squad. “I’m glad we had a week off,” she said. “We had a really good week of practice. We raised the bar. And we put it into action.”
Avon scored a pair of goals off deflections to end two-time defending Class S champion Granby’s 34-game winning streak with a hard-fought 2-1 victory Monday afternoon.
Sophomore Caroline Schaefer scored off a pass from Emily Arciero with 9:25 left in the game to give the Falcons the lead. And then the Falcon defense was able to hold off Granby (6-1, 5-1 NCCC) to earn the victory.
Avon goalie Nicole Andrew made nine saves, including a point-blank save with about 2:50 left in the game. The Bears had several penalty corner opportunities but couldn’t get off good shots thanks to an aggressive Avon defense.
This was Avon’s first real challenge of the season. Granby, which was ranked No. 3 in last week’s state coaches poll, had shutout their last five opponents, outscoring them by a 39-1 margin.
“I told them it doesn’t matter who we are playing,” Ziemiecki said. “Just play your best. Prove it to yourself. Prove it to me.”
Avon (6-0, 6-0 NCCC) took a 1-0 lead with 10:37 left in the first half when Arciero ripped a shot about four feet off the ground that teammate Maddy Riccardi redirected into the goal. Granby tied the game with 2:35 left in the first half when Leah Giuliano was left all alone on the post next to Andrew.
Granby’s Morgan Malone drove in for the shot that bounced off Andrew’s pad to Guiliano, who stuffed it into the net. Granby outshot the Falcons, 7-5 and held an 11-7 edge in penalty corners.
“Every game, we look to play our best,” Arciero said. “We did a good job of getting on the post and scoring. We put a lot of heart into the game, as we always do.”
NOTE: While Granby’s winning streak was significant and dating back to 2009, the school record is 67 wins in a row from 1969-74. … Avon was ranked No. 7 in the latest state coaches poll.
Avon 2, Granby 1
Granby (6-1) 1 0 — 0
Avon (6-0) 1 1 — 2
Goals: Maddy Riccardi (A), Caroline Schaefer (A), Leah Giuliano (G); Assists: Emily Arciero (A) 2, Morgan Malone (G); Saves – Nicole Andrew (A) 9, D.D. Soika (G) 3; Shots – Granby, 7-5; Penalty corners – Granby 11-7