Hoggard advances with rout of Laney
Tue. May 07, 2013 at 9:54 p.m. | By Powell Latimer | StarNews Staff Writer
Hoggard's Julia Buehler runs through Laney defenders Kelsie Sullivan (left) and Peyton Coleman during the second round of the NCHSAA tournament at Hoggard on Tuesday, May 7, 2013. (Photo by Matt Born)
Beating a team three times in a season is supposed to be tough. Hoggard’s girls lacrosse team made it look like a cakewalk on Tuesday.
The Vikings trounced Laney 19-5 in the second round of the NCHSAA tournament in much the same fashion as the teams’ two regular-season meetings. Hoggard coach Erin Redmond said she tried to make sure her team didn’t overlook Laney.
“I really made sure to tell them that everyone we see, it’s a new team,” Redmond said. “It doesn’t matter what the score was, a team is going to make adjustments and get better.”
The Vikings certainly got the message. Ali Valinski and Kristin Flynn scored four goals in the first two minutes of play to send an early message. The Vikings never looked back.
“We were definitely told to play like it’s the playoffs,” Valinksi said.
Laney brought momentum to Tuesday’s game after beating Topsail in the first round of the playoffs, but the Bucs still weren’t able to keep up with the Vikings. Hoggard’s transition attack was simply faster than Laney.
“We’ve been really working on our transition stick skills,” Redmond said. “We wanted to have everyone be a defender no matter what position they are, and I think that helped a few players discover their speed.”
Leading the way were Julia Buehler with five goals and Valinski, who repeatedly sliced through the Laney defense for four goals and two assists.
“We wanted to come out strong,” Valinski said, “ And we tried to be aggressive with driving to the net if it was there.”
The Vikings also blanketed the Buccaneers’ leading scorer and central offensive cog, Molly Lewis. Hoggard doubled Lewis as often as possible to prevent her from scoring. The Laney offense sputtered, and by the time Lewis finally did get a goal, 10 minutes into the second half, Hoggard led 16-3.
“We knew she’s a great player in the midfield with great stick skills,” Valinski said. “We just doubled her and took away the adjacent pass to try and give her nowhere to go.”
The win also marked Redmond’s 100th game at Hoggard.
“I had no idea,” Redmond said. “It makes me feel kind of old. But year to year I can say the same thing about my team: They’re great girls who buy in to how we play. That makes the time go by quicker.”
The Vikings advance to play the winner of Green Hope and Athens Drive on Friday at Hoggard.
Powell Latimer: 343-2261
On Twitter: @StarNewsVarsity