FREEPORT — Even in a year when the roster is small and there are signs of vulnerability, never overlook the York High field hockey team.

It’s a given that a team coached by Barb Marois will demonstrate dramatic improvement as the season progresses, as the Freeport Falcons found out Thursday afternoon.

The Wildcats held Freeport to just three shots and got a pair of second-half goals off penalty corners from senior captain Olivia Coite to extend their winning streak to four with a 2-1 victory.

York (6-2-1) ended a string of three straight losses to Freeport (6-2), which had never beaten the Wildcats until last year. The Falcons won 3-0 earlier this season, after defeating York in last year’s Class B South final.

“We’ve been a work in progress since we started,” said Marois. “Last time (against Freeport), we weren’t quite our team yet, and sometimes that takes time. We have a good core group returning, but it’s new positions, roles and responsibilities, and not a lot of depth. I’m proud of (the girls).”

Freeport couldn’t generate a decent scoring chance early in the game despite three first-half penalty corners.


York then broke the ice with 7:18 to go in the third quarter. Ava Brent inserted the ball off a corner, Lindsay Rivers sent the ball toward the net, and after it was deflected by a defender, Coite knocked it past Falcons goalie Maddie Kryzak (three saves).

“I think the corners we did were pretty successful. I was just in the right place,” said Coite.

With 10:07 left in the game, Coite struck again, off another rebound following a corner.

“We’ve practiced corners a lot to figure out exactly where we need to be, and left wing is normally the one to get the good tip,” said Brent.

Freeport, which had just one shot in the first three quarters, finally got some life with 5:11 to play when Emily Groves scored off a rebound, beating York goalie Natalie Dickson (two saves).

Marois called a timeout, and the Wildcats didn’t allow another shot.


“I was confident coming in because I’ve seen the progress we’ve made since the last time we played (Freeport),” Marois said. “I knew we had a good chance if we played quality field hockey. It was good to put a couple in.

“We’ve really started to focus on defense and make that our calling card. We did it tonight.”

Falcons Coach Marcia Wood said it wasn’t her team’s best effort.

“We talked during the timeouts and I asked, ‘What is going on?’” Wood said. “That was so not my team. I’m not really sure why. It went from bad to worse. York beat us to every single ball. We didn’t play with any urgency and we didn’t listen to each other, or what I wanted them to do.

“You can never underestimate York. Ever.”

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