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Heartstopper: Brady pulls out OT win over Newfound to reach D-III final

  • Newfound’s Maggie Bednaz (left nearest ball) and Bishop Brady’s Margaret Sheehan (closest behind) race to the ball during the Division III field hockey semifinals Wednesday evening at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter. Brady won in overtime, 3-2, to advance to Sunday’s state championship game. TIM O’SULLIVAN / Monitor staff

  • Newfound’s Hayse Broome (left) and Bishop Brady’s Ashlyn Toupin (1) fight for possession during Wednesday’s Division III field hockey semifinal contest at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter. TIM O’SULLIVAN / Monitor staff

  • Bishop Brady’s Libbey Hicks (right) lets a shot fly as Newfound’s Caroline Marchand (1) defends during Wednesday’s Division III field hockey semifinal game at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter. TIM O’SULLIVAN / Monitor staff

  • The Bishop Brady field hockey team celebrates after scoring the game-winning goal in overtime to defeat Newfound, 3-2, on Wednesday evening during the Division III semifinals at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter. TIM O’SULLIVAN / Monitor staff

  • LEFT: Brady’s Halle Laramie (on a knee) watches as her shot rolls past Newfound goalie Hayleigh Pabst (99) and into the back of the cage for the game-winning goal during overtime of Wednesday’s D-III field hockey semifinal contest at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter. ABOVE: Brady’s Libbey Hicks (right) lets a shot fly as Newfound’s Caroline Marchand (1) defends. TIM O’SULLIVAN Photos / Monitor staff

Monitor staff
Published: 10/30/2019 9:26:46 PM

EXETER – She pulled her hamstring in the first half, took a ball off the elbow in the second half and bandages wrapped around both injuries. But there was no way Bishop Brady’s Halle Laramie was going to miss overtime of Wednesday’s Division III field hockey semifinal.

“I never thought about not going back out there,” Laramie said. “I’d do anything for my team.”

What she did on Wednesday was score the golden goal in overtime. That score gave the No. 3 Giants a 3-2 win, completed a comeback from two goals down against No. 2 Newfound and sent Brady into Sunday’s championship game to face No. 5 Mascoma, which beat No. 1 Hopkinton, 2-0, in the second semifinal at Bill Ball Stadium.

Laramie left the first semifinal with about eight minutes left in the first half after hurting her hamstring. She came back after halftime, and in the final seconds of the second half a ball hit the inside of her elbow and left a nasty bruise. But when the Giants (15-2) came back for the 7-on-7 overtime, Laramie was among the seven, and she wasn’t thinking about her injuries.

“We knew we had a strong seven, and we always work best together when its 7-on-7, so we were feeling pretty good about it,” Laramie said.

Those good feelings translated into a goal 1:11 into the extra session. Three of the forces who power Brady’s offense were involved in the game-winning play: Ashlyn Toupin sent a pass to Libbey Hicks at the top of the circle, and Hicks touched it on to Laramie. Her initial shot was blocked by Newfound defender Maggie Bednaz, but Laramie swiped the ball back from Bednaz and fired another shot, this one beating Newfound goalie Hayleigh Pabst.

“I just saw it on (Bednaz’s) stick and took it off it and just shot as hard as I could on goal,” Laramie said. “It hit the board and I heard it and I felt it.”

Seeing the bandaged junior score didn’t surprise Brady coach Kelly Owen.

“That’s Halle,” Owen said. “I know when she gets the ball she’s going to go, and I don’t have any worries. Her confidence from last year to this year is huge.”

Owen said all of her juniors (eight of Brady’s 17 players are in 11th grade) have made a similar leap in confidence, and they needed it on Wednesday.

The Giants had a chance to grab the first goal when they were awarded a penalty stroke with 6:37 left in the first half, but Pabst made a blocker save on Toupin. About two minutes later, Newfound (13-3) took a 1-0 lead when Hayse Broome scored on an assist from Tiffany Doan.

Despite that turn of events and the one-goal deficit, Brady hung on to its confidence during halftime.

“At halftime they said they were going to win it,” Owen said. “We had 30 minutes and we needed to believe. Before the game I gave everyone a believe thing (a small piece of laminated paper that had the word “Believe” printed on it). They all put them in their socks.”

Those believing socks were put to the test when the Bears scored in the second minute of the second half. Caroline Marchand took the shot just inside the circle, but multiple players from both teams thought she was outside the circle, and they all stopped. In the confusion, the ball went through traffic and into the goal to give Newfound a 2-0 lead with 28:12 left in the second half.

The Bears pressured for a third goal immediately after, but Brady got some good defense from Kathryn Weed and Raelyn Roberts to hold the fort before finding a goal off a penalty corner. Rebecca Murphy put the ball in to Toupin, who moved it to Hicks. The sophomore snapped off a wrist shop that lifted off the turf and made it 2-1 with 22:40 remaining in regulation.

The Giants surged after that goal and found another one with 15:56 left on the clock. Newfound went down a player and Brady immediately took advantage when Toupin crossed a ball and Laramie connected on a one-time shot.

“That was in the moment, but we’re always trying to look for that to happen,” Owen said of the goal-scoring play.

Brady earned a pair of penalty corners in the final eight minutes of regulation and took that momentum with them into overtime.

“Ultimately we prepared them to do what they needed to do today,” Owen said.

Now they will try to do it again one more time, 11 a.m. on Sunday at Bedford High School against Mascoma in the D-III final.

“This has been our goal since summer workouts,” Laramie said.

Getting back to the final was also a goal for top-ranked Hopkinton (14-2), who lost to Mascoma in last year’s championship game. But the Hawks were stymied by the Royals again this year as Macoma (14-3) claimed a 2-0 win in the second D-III final and will get a chance to defend its championship on Sunday against Brady.

The Royals took a 1-0 lead in the first half when they converted off a penalty corner. Junior Natalie Poitras scored the goal, assisted by sophomore Morgan Towne.

Mascoma was quicker to the ball than the Hawks in the first half, and that didn’t change after halftime. The Royals doubled their lead just 1:40 into the second half when senior Nicole Williams scored an unassisted goal during the run of play.

The Hawks were scoring 3.3 goals per game coming into the semifinals, but they just couldn’t solve the defense from the Royals, who they had beaten, 2-1, back on Sept. 10. That was a different Mascoma team, however. The Royals started the season just 2-3, but they’ve now won 12 straight and will play in their third consecutive D-III final on Sunday.

D-I Boys’ Soccer

No. 9 Concord 2,
No. 8 Exeter 1, OT

Key players: Concord – Alasdair Ferrier (G), Faisal Abdallah (G), Pascal Zabayo (A), Alejo Caceres (A), Abbas Abdulrahman (7 saves), Duvan Morikawa-Montenegro (midfield), Brandon Comire (defense)

Highlights: Ferrier scored three minutes into overtime, setting a Concord High boys’ soccer program record with 18 goals scored in a single season, and the Tide avenged an early-season loss by defeating the Blue Hawks in the first round of the Division I tournament. After a scoreless first half, Exeter scored on a header in the 43rd minute off a set piece. Abdallah tied the game seven minutes later, finishing a cross that Pascal Zabayo sent off the end line. Ferrier scored on a shot 33 yards from goal, taking a pass from Caceres. The Blue Hawks had beaten Concord, 1-0, on Sept. 13. The Tide will play at No. 1 Bedford (15-0-1) in Saturday’s quarterfinal.

Coach’s quote: “It was a very intense match. It was gratifying to win after we had not played well against (Exeter) the first time earlier in the season. Abbas was strong in the air and Duvan was pivotal to our attack.” – Concord’s Scott Dunlop

Records: Concord 8-6-3; Exeter 9-5-3

D-II Boys’ Soccer

No. 5 Bow 1,
No. 12 Stevens 0, 2OT

Key players: Bow – Matt Ferland (G), Nate Dolder (defense), Graham Weisberg (defense), Connor Wachsmuth (defense), Daniel Leuchtenberger (midfield), Matt Selleck (midfield); Stevens – Cooper Moote (goalie)

Highlights: The Falcons generated scoring opportunities all match long, but wasn’t until 1:35 into the second overtime when Ferland’s shot from 10 yards, off a midfield pass from Parker VanHam, got by Stevens goalie Moote who made several “ESPN highlight saves,” according to Bow coach George Pinkham. The Falcons travel to No. 4 Milford (9-3-4) on Saturday for their quarterfinal match.

Coach’s quote: “’It's alive! It’s alive,’ Henry Frankenstein proclaimed in the 1931 horror classic Frankenstein. ‘We’re alive! We’re alive,’ the Bow boys’ soccer team proclaimed after a hard fought, double OT win against a tough and determined Stevens team. Playing an underdog is never an easy game. A tournament game means that one team’s season will end. Stevens did not want their season to end and they played that way. Their season did end, but with a valiant effort.” – Bow’s George Pinkham

Records: Bow 10-4-3; Stevens 7-10-0

No. 9 Manchester West 2, No. 8 Coe-Brown 1

Highlights: The Blue Knights beat the Bears in Northwood to advance to D-II quarterfinals and end Coe-Brown’s season in the first round.

Coach’s quote: “Congratulations to Manchester West. They were able to get a fairly early goal and stave off our pressure. Soccer is not always forgiving with crossbars and bounces and near misses. It’s even less forgiving when it’s the playoffs and one loss ends the journey. Nonetheless, I’m incredibly proud of the growth of this team and I’m even more proud of the family our team has become.” – Coe-Brown’s Christian Gompert

Records: West 10-7-0; Coe-Brown 9-7-1

Kearsarge 2,
Merrimack Valley 1

Key players: Kearsarge – Gavin Fedas (2G), Toby MacLeod (A), Aidan McCullough (A), Travis Kane (G); MV – Colby Mercier (G), Logan Cassin (A)

Highlights: Mercier’s goal gave MV a 1-0 halftime lead, but Fedas scored his first goal on a great service from MacLeod from the right flank and scored the game-winner off an assist from Kearsarge captain McCullough to upset the Pride in the first round of the D-II tournament. The Cougars will travel to Durham on Saturday to take on No. 3 Oyster River (11-2-3).

Coach’s quote: “The team played great today. We knew what to expect from MV and made some adjustments to player positions and formation. It paid off. Our defense did a great job shutting down their two big strikers. It was a 100 percent team effort.” – Kearsarge’s Matt Burch

Records: Kearsarge 7-8-2; MV 10-6-1

D-III Boys’ Soccer

No. 5 Mascoma 4,
No. 12 Bishop Brady 0

Highlights: The Giants’ season came to an end at the boots of the No. 5 Royals.

Records: Mascoma 13-4-0; Bishop Brady 7-7-2

No. 7 Hopkinton 5,
No. 10 Hillsboro-Deering 0

Key players: Hopkinton – Andrew Beckwith (G, 2A), Garrett Fitzgerald (G), Shea Dickson (G), Kevin Newton-Delgado (G), Ethan Molnar (G), Derek West (A), Quinn Whitehead (A), Aidan Burns (4 saves); H-D – Logan Clough (5 saves)

Highlights: Beckwith scored on a penalty kick in the 19th minute and slotted balls into the box that Fitzgerald and Dickson put away in the 25th and 49th minutes, respectively, to lift the Hawks to a first-round victory over the Hillcats. Newton-Delgado scored in the 61st minute and Molnar completed the scoring in the 79th. Hopkinton will play at No. 2 Gilford (15-1-1) in Saturday’s quarterfinal.

Coach’s quote: “The Hawk players quickly took control of the game and repeatedly exploited gaps in the Hillsboro defense, assuaging any fears the coaches may have harbored about the quick rematch. Beckwith put together monster minutes tonight.” – Hopkinton’s Scott Zipke

Records: Hopkinton 12-4-1; H-D 9-8-0

No. 4 Belmont 1,
No. 13 St. Thomas 0, OT

Key players: Belmont – Nate Sottak (G), Lucas Mathieu (A), Jacobb Bivens (5 saves), Devin Bricknell (defense), Dylan Greer (defense), Joey Spinale (defense), Jason Gaudette (defense)

Highlights: Sottak took a feed from Mathieu 1:25 into the first overtime to help the No. 4 Raiders survive a scare from the upset-minded Saints. Belmont will host No. 5 Mascoma (13-4-0) on Saturday in the quarterfinals.

Coach’s quote: “We seem to like OT and a flair for the dramatic. Excellent work tonight by the team.” – Belmont’s Michael Foley

Records: Belmont 13-4-0; St. Thomas 8-8-1

D-III Girls’ Volleyball

No. 3 Epping 3,
No. 14 Belmont 1

Highlights: The Raiders picked up a win against the third-seeded Blue Devils, but it wasn’t enough to prevent Belmont’s season from coming to an end in the first round of the Division III tournament.

Records: Epping 15-2; Belmont 6-11

No. 5 Prospect Mountain 3,
No. 12 Franklin 1

Highlights: The Golden Tornadoes took one set back after going down 2-0, but couldn’t carry the momentum into the third set, as the Timberwolves ultimately eliminated Franklin the first round of the D-III tournament.

Records: Prospect Mtn.14-3; Franklin 7-10

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