BEDFORD, N.Y. – One game into the 2012 varsity field hockey season, Fox Lane’s defense and goalie Keely Connors proved they are going to be a strength.
Connors, along with the defense of Paige Beyer, Sarah Corcoran and Emily Tartes, played an outstanding game Wednesday in a 1-0 loss to four-time defending Section 1 Class A champion Mamaroneck.
Connors made 17 of her 20 saves in the second half. And when Connors was making saves, the defense was there to clear the circle as Fox Lane withstood furious pressure from Mamaroneck.
“Keely came up huge for us in the second half,” Fox Lane coach Melissa Heyde said. “This is Keely’s second year on varsity, as a sophomore, and she has taken her game to another level. Keely is the reason the game was 1-0.”
Beyer has the most experience of the defense. Heyde said Corcoran, who was a forward last year, is playing defense because of an injury, and this is Tartes’ first year on varsity.
“Paige is one of the most skilled players on the team, and she sets the tone for us on defense,” Heyde said. “Sarah has made the transition to defense seamlessly and did a great job. Emily did a great job also and really stepped it up today.”
Heyde said Fox Lane usually plays Mamaroneck at the midpoint of its season. However, this year, the Foxes drew the difficult opening-day assignment.
“I feel this will give us the confidence we need after playing a top-notch team like Mamaroneck and showed we can contend with them,” Heyde said.