High schools: Pembroke opens girls’ soccer prelims with big victory over defending champs

Pembroke Academy’s Bailey Gatchell (6) celebrates with teammates after scoring the first goal of the game in the third minute. Gatchell scored four goals as No. 7 Pembroke went on to defeat No. 10 Pelham, 6-1, in a rematch of last year’s Division II championship game.

Pembroke Academy’s Bailey Gatchell (6) celebrates with teammates after scoring the first goal of the game in the third minute. Gatchell scored four goals as No. 7 Pembroke went on to defeat No. 10 Pelham, 6-1, in a rematch of last year’s Division II championship game. RICH MIYARA / NH Sports Photography

Published: 10-26-2023 12:31 AM

D-II Girls’ Soccer

No. 7 Pembroke 6, No. 10 Pelham 1

Key players: Pembroke – Laila Al Shawafi (14 saves), Bailey Gatchell (4 goals), Giannah Michelson (goal, assist), Lily Ricci (goal), Mackenzie Hawkins (assist), Lindsey Jones (assist), Layla Thorne (defense), Abby Shaugnessy (defense), Guilianna Davis (defense),  Lily Royer (defense)

Highlights:  The Spartans struck in the third minute and led 4-0 at halftime to cruise to a preliminary round victory in a rematch of last year’s Division II championship game that Pelham won. The Pythons scored their only goal to open the second half to make it 4-1, but Pembroke tacked two more on the board, including one on a penalty kick. The Spartans have won five matches in a row and will travel to No. 2 Merrimack Valley (13-2-1) for Sunday’s quarterfinal.

Coach’s quote:  “This was a great way to open up our playoff run. The girls executed what we have been talking about and didn’t let Pelham respond. Excited for what is to come.” – Pembroke’s Jess Kaufman-Desrochers

Records: Pembroke 10-7-0; Pelham 7-10-0

D-III Girls’ Soccer

No. 3 Hopkinton 9, No. 14 Mascoma 1

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Key players: Hopkinton – Keegan St. Cyr (3 goals), Katie Brown (goal, 2 assists), Annie Morrall (goal, assist), Sarah Chodosh (goal), Lizz Holmes (goal, assist), Avery Chase (goal, assist), Paige Prisco-Nelson (assist), Zoe Bishop (assist), Avery Loew (2 saves)

Highlights: The Hawks were only up 3-1 at halftime, but dominated the second half to advantage to the Division III quarterfinals. Hopkinton will host No. 6 Trinity (11-4-2) on Sunday. The Hawks defeated Trinity, 3-2, on Sept. 12.

Coach’s quote: “Mascoma came ready to play and they played good soccer. They held us close in the first half, but we were able to use our endurance and ball movement to dominate the second half.” – Hopkinton’s Mike Zahn

Records: Hopkinton 13-2-2; Mascoma 7-10-0

No. 5 Kearsarge 3, No. 12 Inter-Lakes 0

Key players: Kearsarge – Carly Grant (2 goals), Chloe Hasey (goal, assist), Ava Shapiro (assist), Maddie Thorp (assist), Tessa Marinello (defense), Nadia Spiegel (defense), Adara Boucher (4 saves)

Highlights:  The game started slow with both defenses shutting each other down, but Grant finally opened the scoring in the 32nd minute off an assist from Thorp. The Cougars controlled most of the second half, with Hasey, playing her first match in five weeks, scoring in the 53rd minute after finishing a through ball from Shapiro. Grant scored another goal in the final five minutes off a back pass from Hasey. Boucher made a key save, coming off her line to stop an Inter-Lakes breakaway. Kearsarge will travel to No. 4 Stevens (13-2-2) to play Sunday’s quarterfinal.

Coach’s quote:  “Tough battle to open the playoffs.  We are missing some key players and getting some back who haven’t played in a while. Proud of the way the girls stepped up and filled roles they weren’t very familiar with. They showed a lot of toughness and resilience and battled hard. We need to build on this and get ready for the second round.” – Kearsarge’s Dave Smith

Records: Kearsarge 11-4-2; I-L 7-9-1

No. 6 Trinity 2, No. 11 Belmont 0

Highlights: The Raiders lost to the Pioneers in Wednesday’s preliminary round. Belmont won five of its final six matches in the regular season to qualify for the playoffs.

Records: Trinity 11-4-2; Belmont 8-8-1

No. 1 St. Thomas 3, No. 16 Bishop Brady 0

Highlights: After losing to the Saints 7-1 on Sept. 12, the Giants kept things much closer in Wednesday’s preliminary round match. St. Thomas has been the D-III runner-up for the last two seasons.

Records: St. Thomas 15-0-2; Bishop Brady 5-10-2