Liberty Game of the Week Winner: Fairfax Posts 3-0 Win Over Jefferson
Freeman, Allen, Duke score as Rebels move to 6-0
Fairfax Rebels head coach Amber Beaudoin has high standards for her field hockey team. So high, in fact, that a 6-0 start and a 3-0 victory over an improved Jefferson team Wednesday night has left her unimpressed.
Emily Freeman and Sara Allen scored with less than six minutes left in the first half, and Charlotte Duke added another goal early in the second half to help Fairfax start Liberty District play 1-0.
The Rebels have outscored their first six opponents 20-1 as they try to win a fourth consecutive district title since joining the Liberty in 2009. Their early season success has come from an almost entirely overhauled roster.
"We lost 11 seniors last year, and nine of them played a lot and eight of them started, so I think it's really hard to compare them," Beaudoin said of the differences between this year's team and the one from a year ago. "We're really working out our defense and I think that's going to be the key to how we perform in the postseason. "We're playing a lot of sophomores, and sophomores make sophomore mistakes."
Those mistakes ultimately proved negligible against a Colonials team that's attempting to improve on a 5-12-1 campaign in 2011. That squad started the season 5-3 before going winless in district play, so Jefferson will have to prove that its 4-4 start to 2012 isn't in the same mold.
Despite Fairfax's advantage in possession in the first half, it was Jefferson that had some of the best early scoring opportunities. Laura Brouckman got free on a 3-0 break, but pushed her shot just to the left of the cage in the opening minutes of the game.
At the other end of the field, goalkeeper Priya Seetharaman kept the Colonials even as long as she could. She made a pair of nice saves two minutes apart midway through the first half, but the constant pressure applied by Fairfax eventually became too much to stop.
The start of the second half was played primarily around midfield, but after Duke's goal Jefferson struggled to keep the ball out of the defensive side of the field.
Beaudoin went on to say that it's also been a challenge playing on several grass fields to start the season. She's not the first coach, field hockey or otherwise, to complain about the quality of grass fields across the Northern Region.
"I think grass poses its own challenge, and we are a team that practices and plays primarily on turf, so we have to specially prepare to play on this," she said. "I mean, look at the field. It's got a huge crown. You're playing uphill one way. I think the region really needs to do something about equalizing the surfaces so that they're all good."
It was no coincidence that Beaudoin chose to enter a midseason tournament at Herndon High School that starts this weekend - both fields there are turf.
Wednesday's Fairfax vs Thomas Jefferson High School field hockey game was this week's Liberty District Game of the week, earning special coverage. To vote for next week's game, click here.