Amelia Murcott of Madison drives toward the slot.
Madison players defend on a Mountain Lakes clearing attempt.
Amelia Murcott of Madison looks to go to goal.
Rachel Azzolini of Madison looks to shoot on the Mountain Lakes goal.
Amelia Murcott of Madison looks to get free from a slew of Mountain Lakes defenders.
Ali Jago of Madison looks to make a move on a Mountain Lakes defender in the offensive zone.
Madison Girls Lacrosse Team Jolted in Quarter Finals by Mountain Lakes, 16-4
Saturday, May 19, 2012 • 7:39am
MOUNTAIN LAKES, NJ – A young Madison Lady Dodger’s team that has only four seniors could not handle the offensive presence and intensity of Mountain Lakes as they were knocked out of the NJSIAA North Group 1 sectional tournament in a 16-4 one sided affair on Friday afternoon in Mountain Lakes.
Ten different scorers from Mountain Lakes broke through the likes of seniors Siobhan McCulloch and Winnie Caetta as well as the rest of the Madison defense as they gave up their second highest goals against in a game this season.
“Mountain Lakes always presents a strong team and a good way to measure our team’s success,” Madison Head Coach Amanda Counts said. “We didn’t capitalize on some of our offensive opportunities. We weren’t able to show many offensive things,” she added.
The big reason for that was draw control. Simply put, Madison just did not have the speed and timing when it came to vying for possession of the ball in the faceoff circle.
No matter who took the draw; whether it was Molly Fishter, Michelle Montagna or McCulloch the team combined to win only six of 22 total face-offs. That forced them to play defense for much of the contest. And that is usually not a formula for success in girls lacrosse.
“Lack of possession; we struggled with the draw possessions. I think today it came down to groundballs. It just wasn’t in our favor,” Counts commented.
The game started off in the home team’s favor as Mountain Lakes scored 1:19 in to take the early 1-0 advantage.
Madison won the ensuing draw and the ball eventually wound up on the team’s leading scorer Ali Jago’s stick. She was able to fire a shot past Mountain Lakes goaltender Sara Allison, but the goal was immediately waved off because of a crease violation.
Mountain Lakes would score on their next two possessions to take a 3-0 lead, but the Madison was finally able to break through with their first tally of the contest.
Jago got free in the slot after a nice spin move and buried in a shot as Madison was down by just two at 3-1 with 14:28 left in the first half.
“I think right in the beginning when we took a look at how comfortable it was back and forth, I think they believed that they could be in it. Overall, great effort,” Counts said.
However, after that goal, the momentum quickly swung in Mountain Lakes’ favor and it stayed that way for the entire game. They scored the last four goals of the opening half in less than a ten minute span.
Madison had one more shot on goal midway through the first frame, but Amelia Murcott’s free try was stymied by Allison. Madison trailed 7-1 at the break.
The second half saw Madison show some life right in the beginning when Jago netted her second of the game in transition off a nice feed from teammate Ari Goret. That made the score 8-2 with 23:44 remaining.
After that, Mountain Lakes took over by continuing to control the faceoff and consequently bombarding more goals into the Madison cage. They scored the next nine goals of the second half to effectively put the game out of reach.
Still showing fight, Madison refused to give up and scored the last two goals of the game when Montagna and Brynn Taylor converted.
Although it is a tough way to end the season, Counts maintains that her girls have every reason to be proud of a successful year that also saw them reach the quarterfinals in the Morris County tournament. They finish the year with a 12-6 record.
“We’re a young team and we’re looking forward to next season. Thanks to their leadership and guidance that they (the seniors) provided, it should be some pretty big shoes to fill,” she said.