By Joe Clark, HockomockSports.com Student Reporter
FRANKLIN, Mass. – After scoring just over one minute into the game, the Franklin girls lacrosse team struggled to find the back of the net for much of the first half.
Despite eight shots on goal during the half, Bishop Feehan goalie Maggie Roberts came up with big save after big save to deny the Panthers, and with 1:06 left to go in the half, the Shamrocks led 2-1.
Kelsey McCallum scored off a shooting space penalty to tie the game at 2-2, and milliseconds before the buzzer sounded to end the half, Hailey Toolin found the back of the net to put Franklin up 3-2.
Those two goals proved to be the spark that Franklin needed, as in the second half their offense broke through with eight goals en route to an 11-4 victory over Bishop Feehan.
“I give credit to their goalie, she was really good, but we weren’t making the changes in our shots we needed to make, and those last two goals really gave us momentum going into the second half, and it kind of gave us an idea of where we need to shoot,” said Franklin coach Kristin Igoe Guarino.
To start the second half, Franklin scored four unanswered goals, including two from Erin Walsh, to put the Panthers up 7-2. With 16:23 left, Feehan scored to make it 7-3, but back-to-back goals by Annie Walsh and Elizabeth Wilson put the game pretty much out of reach at 9-3. Feehan would add another goal, but Franklin tacked on two more in the last 1:09 of the game to finish off the 11-4 win.
One of the keys for Franklin was their success with draw controls, as Franklin won fourteen out of sixteen draws, including ten out of eleven in the second half.
“Our draws have been pretty consistent all year, we’ve been beating teams in draws, we’ve been focused on our possessions on offense, and translating our draw wins into goals, and that’s been our struggle all year, and we were finally able to get more than eight goals this game,” Igoe-Guarino added.
In the first half, Erin Walsh started out the scoring early, netting Franklin’s first goal a minute and fourteen seconds into the game. For much of the first six minutes, Franklin controlled possession, and despite some good looks, they were turned away by Roberts.
With 17:28 left to go, Feehan tied the game up. They had another good opportunity with 10:13 left in the half, but a save by Gianna Cameron kept the game tied up at one with a nice save. Feehan took a 2-1 with 3:05 left to go, but that was the only lead they would hold for the rest of the game.
Franklin (4-3) will travel to Natick on Monday to take on the Redhawks in what will be a rematch of the 2017 MIAA D1 East Quarterfinals.
Bishop Feehan (5-2) will travel to Marshfield on Monday to take on the Rams.