Cote Scores Seven to Lead Wahconah in Opener
CHESHIRE, Mass. -- Emmy Cote scored seven goals, and the Wahconah girls lacrosse team used a 5-0 run midway through the second half to earn a 17-9 win over Hoosac Valley on Wednesday afternoon.
Wahconah (1-0) led, 10-7, early in the second half, when McKenna McIlquham scored back-to-back goals to push the lead to five goals.
Then, after Cote and Jordan Budaj each hit the back of the net, McIlquham scored again on her way to a five-goal performance.
“It was good to get the bugs out,” Wahconah coach Kathy Budaj said. “There were definitely some bugs. … I’ve got some players in different positions. We’re working things out.
“In the first game of the season, it’s nice to come out with a ‘W,’ and it’s nice to see Hoosac giving us such a good game.”
Katie Bachli came up big for Wahconah, particularly in the second half, when she made five of her nine saves. That included a stop on Hoosac Valley’s Aubrey Rumbolt (four goals) on a shot that would have made it 10-8.
“Katie’s a good goalie,” Budaj said. “She knows what she’s doing, and she came up with some nice saves.”
And she is more of a force in Wahconah’s counterattack, utilizing her passing skills to help her team get out of its defensive end.
“Katie’s becoming more of a defensive player as well as a keeper,” Budaj said. “She’s been on the field long enough -- since freshman year -- that I’m confident in her.”
Wahconah needed to be firing on all cylinders against a Hoosac squad that concentrates on bottling up teams in the middle of the field.
“I thought our defense broke down a little in the second half from lack of communication,” Hoosac Valley coach Molly Meczywor said. “But other than that, I thought we moved the ball pretty well for this early in the season.
“I think one of our strengths is pressuring in the midfield. I think we do a really good job of slowing them down. … I think we did a really good job in our first game with that and then again today. We pressure.”
Hoosac Valley (1-1) got two goals apiece from Alie Mendel and Claudia Bressett and seven saves from keeper Abi Disbrow.
The Hurricanes did not get the win they were looking for against one of the county’s powers, but they can take some positives from a game that had a three-goal margin early in the second half.
“In order for our program to go, we’ve got to be competitive against these guys,” Meczywor said. “We can’t just be competitive against the independents. We have to have a game against a Wahconah or a Greylock that’s still a level above ours and show what we can do.”
Hoosac Valley goes to Pope Francis on Thursday, when Wahconah goes to Brattleboro, Vt.