Gilford lost to Bow by the score of 8-1. The only Gilford player to score was second-seeded Charleyne Panner, who beat Nisha Naik 8 games to 2.
Panner and Cheralynn Corsack, comprising Gilford's top doubles team, nearly earned a second point, losing to the doubles team of Naik/Sunday Swett in a tiebreaker.
Gilford will host its first playoff game on Wednesday, against fifth-seeded Monadnock. If Gilford wins, the team will have a chance to seek revenge against the top-seeded Bow, which has a bye in the first round of elimination play.
Last Updated on Monday, 20 May 2013 11:32
The team has a bye in Tuesday's Division III quarterfinals and hosts a semi-finals match on Thursday at 4 p.m. at the Gilford town courts.
Last Updated on Monday, 20 May 2013 11:31
This season, Plymouth appears capable of matching that success. With a record of 12 wins, one loss, including a 10-5 victory over Gilford on Monday, Mausolf's team is tied with Hollis-Brookline in the standings and trails only undefeated Hopkinton and Derryfield. Mausolf, though, isn't one to dream of post-season grandeur. Instead, he said he's focusing on one basic, constant goal for his team.
"We would just like to play the best lacrosse that is in us," he said.
"Last year, and this year, we have a strong defense, led by our goalie Dylan McIntosh," said Mausolf. McIntosh, a junior, was on last year's semi-finalist team, as were his leading corps of defensemen, seniors Woody Hedberg, Ryan Farina, Kyle Hodges, and junior Ian McKinnon.
Partly because of Mausolf's approach to the game, and party because of his players' natural strengths, Plymouth this season is a defense-first team. "The focus is trying to limit the other team's opportunities," he said, saying that he's "fortunate" to have players that are talented defenders – a trait that carries through to his midfielders, he noted.
Offensively, Plymouth spreads its scoring duties across much of its roster. "We have a pretty balanced scoring sheet," said Mausolf, with at least seven double-digit scorers on the team. "You want to be more than a one-trick pony," he said.
The success of Plymouth's lacrosse team has more than a peripheral connection to the school's storied football team. Chuck Lenahan, Plymouth football coach, won his 19th championship last year and next month will be inducted into the National Federation of High Schools National High School Hall of Fame. Mausolf was Lenahan's assistant coach for several years and acknowledged parallels between the two programs.
"We share some similar athletes," said Mausolf, who said he brings the same approach to lacrosse that Lenahan applies to football. "Every day, try to improve and be the be the best team possible, as well as see that these young men can be the best people they can be." It's a simple goal but one that has brought Lenahan great returns – his career boasts 13 undefeated seasons and a winning streak that spanned six years.
With that in mind, it's not surprising for Mausolf, when asked if he aspires to bring his team to its second-ever semi-final, or even its first final appearance, to respond with another verse from the same song. "Our focus is just being the best that we can be, not to set any level of lofty expectations, simply to play the best that we can, improve each of these young men as much as possible."
Last Updated on Monday, 20 May 2013 11:29
On May 13, Gilford saw its fifth shutout of the season and beat neighboring Belmont 9-0. Sydney Strout was the winning pitcher striking out 14 , giving up one hit and walking none. Gilford was two players away from a perfect game. In the top of the first inning Belmont had a runner get on base with an infield error, but she was immediately picked off first base by catcher Paige Laliberte. Belmont's only other player to reach base came in the top of the second inning when Makayla Donovan hit a ball up the middle. Strout and the Gilford defense retired the next 16 batters for the victory. The Gilford offense jumped out quickly in the first inning, scoring four runs on two hits, two walks and two errors. Strout got the offense started with a bunt single, courtesy runner Kristina Hayden stole second and scored on an error. Lisa Osborne walked and scored on a Laliberte fielder's choice. Abby Harris got on with a fielder's choice and Caitlin Houston blasted a two-run double to the fence scoring Harris and Laliberte to make the score 4-0 in the first. Gilford added three more runs in the second, highlighted with singles by Mollie Dignan, Strout and Laliberte. Gilford scored two more runs in the fourth when Kelsey Buckley drew a walk and score on a Hannah Chase RBI single and Alyssa Wilson got on with a fielder's choice and scored on a wild pitch.
Gilford earned another 9-0 victory the next day, against opponents from Prospect Mountain. Strout and the Gilford defense were only one out away from a no-hitter. Prospect Mountain's second baseman (Meyer) hit a ball up the middle in the bottom of the seventh with two outs to break up Strout's no hitter. It was a gutsy performance by Strout who in the top of the secenth inning rolled her ankle after running safely through first base. Said coach Joan Forge, "Sydney is a very determined athlete and wanted to finish pitching the game despite having to be taped". Sarah Lachapelle, Gilford's back up pitcher was ready for relief, but Strout insisted on finishing the game. The Gilford defense was especially strong in the seventh inning behind their pitcher. The leadoff batter for Prospect Mountain laid down a bunt which is normally played by Strout, but Laliberte came flying out of the catcher's box to take the ball and gun it to first for the out. The second batter ripped a shot that looked like it was heading for the hole between third and shortstop, but third baseman Lisa Osborne knocked it down and threw for the second out. The third out came with a ball hit to shallow left field and left fielder Mikaela Mattice made a running dive to secure Gilford's sixth shutout. Strout finished with 11 strikeouts, gave up 1 hit and 2 walks.
Gilford scored one run in the first when Laliberte led off with a walk, advanced to second on a Buckley sacrifice bunt, Laliberte had a delayed steal to third and scored on a Caitlin Houston fielder's choice. The score remained 1-0 until the top of the fifth when Gilford scored three more. Dignan led off with a walk and scored on a Lisa Osborne single. Strout singled and scored on a Harris fielder's choice. Osborne scored on a Laliberte single. Gilford exploded for five runs in the sixth which started with Dignan leading off with a single and scoring on an error. The other four runs were highlighted by Laliberte's two run double and Wilson's two run single.
Gilford played three games in the same number of days and outscored opponents 21-0. May 15 saw Gilford battle Farmington for the second place spot in Division III. Both Gilford and Farmington had only one loss on their record and were tied behind undefeated White Mountain. Farmington's only loss came to Gilford early in the season which was a 2-1 victory in 9 innings. Gilford won the rematch with a 3-0 victory. Gilford scored one run in the second inning when Laliberte led off and reached on an error. She advanced to second on a Lachapelle sacrifice bunt and scored on a Houston single to make the score 1-0. Gilford manufactured another run in the third when Strout singled and courtesy runner for Strout, Kristina Hayden, scored on a Osborne fielder's choice to make the score 2-0. Gilford scored one more insurance run in the fourth inning when freshman Lachapelle hit her first homerun of the season. That was all the scoring Gilford needed to secure the win and second place in the standings.
Sydney Strout (2/3 at bat) was the winning pitcher striking out the first eight batters she faced and finishing with 14 strikeouts in total. Strout allowed just two hits and one walk. The Gilford defense is playing the best ball of the season right now and only committed one error in the game. This is Gilford's 5th shutout in a row.
Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013 10:55