It’s been a long time since the Barrington High School girls’ field hockey team lost a game.
On Thursday afternoon, the team picked up its most recent win, handing visiting Division I rival North Kingstown a 2-1 loss. It was the Eagles’ eighth win of the season and the Skippers’ lone goal in the waning minutes of regulation was the first point surrendered by Barrington this season.
The squad may be a young team with a dozen freshmen and sophomores but it’s a group that knows how to win. The Eagles finished 2011 with a 13-1-2 regular season record on route to a state title victory over East Greenwich.
Barrington’s first match of the 2012 season against East Greenwich was re-scheduled to the middle of this month. It will mark the conclusion of a stretch where Barrington plays a number of other teams that could well end up in the state title hunt, including Moses Brown.
Head coach Lee Markowski wasn’t too disappointed to see her team’s shutout streak come to an end though she would have liked to see the group take advantage of more offensive opportunities, such as more than 10 first-half corner plays.
“From here on in we’ve got a series of very good teams, North Kingstown being the first of them,” Markowski said.
“I’m sure goals will be scored on us. We’ve just got to make sure we score more.”
Both goals in the win over North Kingstown came off the stick of sophomore Jillian May. Her first score came about mid-way through the first half off an assist from senior forward Kelly Dolan, also a team co-captain. May’s second score came about two-thirds through the second half on an assist from fellow sophomore forward Elizabeth Dolan
The Eagles kept the ball in North Kingstown territory for an overwhelming majority of time. The few offensive chances posted by North Kingstown were
deflected by Barrington’s defense.
Neither of the team’s captains seemed too upset with allowing a goal, either. Nicole Smith, a senior defender, said she believed the goal actually energized the team to finish off the game without giving North Kingstown another scoring chance.
“It’s a good learning lesson for us,” added Dolan.
“There’s always things we can improve on.”
The co-captains also echoed their coach’s sentiment about the upcoming schedule. Moses Brown leads Division I South with an unblemished record while the Lincoln School, scheduled for scheduled for Oct. 11, battled Barrington to a 0-0 tie earlier this year.
Smith said one advantage to getting such a schedule at this point in the season is Barrington has had a chance to meld as a group.
“One of our goals has been communication, coming together as a team,” said Dolan.
“In the beginning we had trouble with that but the last few games we’ve really grown and come together as a team.”
One factor that may have played a role in the team’s camaraderie is that both captains said the group is a tight knit bunch. Six members of the team, for example, are sisters, including the Dolans, the Smiths and the Mays.
“We’re all really close and we’re really young so it’s fun for us,” Dolan said.
“We get to teach the younger kids. They’ll be great when they’re seniors.”