No. 3 Chesapeake-Anne Arundel drops C. Milton Wright for 3A state field hockey repeat
There weren’t very many shots in Saturday night’s Class 3A state field hockey title game between C. Milton Wright and Chesapeake-Anne Arundel. But the one taken by senior Alexis Arruda sent her teammates and fans into a frenzy.
Her goal with 20.8 seconds left punctuated Chesapeake’s 2-0 win over the Mustangs. It’s the second straight 3A title for the Anne Arundel County school which saw league rival South River repeat in 4A.
It was a perfect ending for Arruda who missed last year’s state final with a broken thumb.
“It was shocking,” said Arruda. “I had so much going through my head. It’s the best time to score a goal.”
Chesapeake (15-2) scored its goal early the first half, and it remained that way until Rachel Fleig fed the ball to Arruda for the last-second clincher.
“It doesn’t get old,” Cougar coach Joan Johnson said of her team’s repeat. “I really thought I’d have some big holes to fill at the start of the season, but I had a core of 15 that played with heart.”
Chesapeake got on the board just 7:06 into the game. Junior Eryn Beal fought off a defender inside the circle by the baseline, and then spun around and slapped a chopper that bounced over the goalkeeper and into the box.
The more physical Cougars continued to dominated possession after that, but both defenses clamped down inside their own territory.
Mustangs first-year coach Kelly Mattingly was happy to see the fight in her players after Chesapeake took the lead.
“I didn’t see our top notch field hockey that we played in the state semifinal game, but we still played well,” she said. “They played their hearts out to get here.”
C.M. Wright (17-2) had its best chance to score with three minutes left in the first half, as Samantha Aljets burst into the circle on a breakaway, but sophomore goalkeeper Eve Vickery charged out of the box and slid to knock the ball away.
“Eve made one of the best saves ever,” Johnson said. “Scoring goals is great, but our defense did a tremendous job tonight.”
The younger players in Chesapeake’s program have gotten another taste of finishing on top, but Johnson showered praise on her five seniors who have passed the torch.
“They were incredible this year,” she said, her voice breaking with emotion. “I’m really going to miss that group of seniors. They worked so hard from day one and gave everything they had.”
CLASS 3A STATE FIELD HOCKEY CHAMPIONSHIP
AT WASHINGTON COLLEGE
No. 3 Chesapeake-Anne Arundel 2, No. 5 C. Milton Wright 0
Chesapeake 1 1 – 2
C. Milton Wright 0 0 – 0
Goals: C – Beal, Arruda.
Assists: C – Fleig.
Saves: C – Vickery 1; CMW – Borg 1.