Massabesic forward Camryn Champlin fires a shot in a regular season field hockey game during the 2018 season. Champlin scored in the second half of the Mustangs’ season opening 6-1 win over the Scots of Bonny Eagle Wednesday afternoon in Waterboro. (JASON GENDRON PHOTOGRAPHY)

WATERBORO — Massabesic field hockey head coach Michele Martin-Moore had a message for her team at halftime as the Mustangs clung to a one goal lead during their season opener against Bonny Eagle in Waterboro: Get back to the basics.

The simple advice paid off as the Mustangs scored five times in the second half to pull away for a 6-1 win over Bonny Eagle on a humid Wednesday afternoon.

“We had to go back to the fundamentals,” Martin-Moore said. “You can’t get rid of the ball until you have the ball. I had to remind them of that, and I think the biggest difference (in the second half) was we stopped swinging at the ball.”

Taking in what the 19-year head coach had to say, forward Isabelle Hurlburt and midfielder Emma Snyder put matters into their own hands by each scoring during a 2:59 span early in the second half to extend the Mustang’s lead to 3-0. Snyder added another goal later in the half, while Camryn Champlin and Micaela Jacobs also scored to add to Massabesic’s total. Despite the final outcome, Moore thought Bonny Eagle’s relentlessness in the first half could’ve swayed the momentum of the game.

“Bonny Eagle really brought in the first half,” she said. “They didn’t go away, so give them a lot of credit. In that first half, it really could’ve been 3-1 them.

However, the Scots couldn’t convert on their opportunities. 

Massabesic took a 1-0 lead 5:19 into the first half on a goal from Mary Duffy, but it was Bonny Eagle that was the aggressor in the opening frame.The Scots put 20 shots on goal in the first half, including several breakaways, but they didn’t score until early in the second half. Despite the missed chances, the shots on goal were an encouraging sign for Bonny Eagle first-year head coach Amethyst Hersom.

“We had some great plays on the offensive end, but we got caught chasing the ball a lot,” Hersom said. “Even though we had more scoring opportunities, (Massabesic) capitalized on the ones that they had.”

The Scots converted when junior Riley Heacock scored 8:22 into the second half to make it 3-1.

Even though Massabesic was able to pull away for a convincing victory, Champlin said there’s much room for improvement as the Mustangs move along in a Class A South region that expects to be competitive from top to bottom. Champlin thinks the Mustangs have the talent to compete with the region’s best, but she said it’s on them to play more cohesively for that to happen.

“Our communication needs to be better,” Champlin said. “We have so much chemistry on our team so it’s not an issue for us to work together, but sometimes there will be those ‘off plays’ where we’re not all in it so we have to get better with that.”

For Hersom, her first regular season game with a new program was a learning experience, and she saw positives from her squad that she hopes to improve as the season goes on. 

“It’s the first game of the season,” Hersom said. “We’re disappointed in the outcome, but (today’s game) just gives us more to hone in and focus on for the next game.”

 

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