Monticello’s field hockey team came into Thursday’s matchup with Charlottesville looking for a big win to take into next week. They battled, and played some excellent defense on the way to surging past the Black Knights with a 3-0 shutout victory.
“I’ve been very blessed, I have 26 players and they’re all skilled players,” said Mustangs coach Dirk Morra. “I walked into this group of young ladies, and it was really an honor and a blessing to be with and work with them.”
Monticello jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first quarter. With 7:58 left in the first, Haedyn Barnes found the back of the goal goal off of a corner play assisted by Reese Murray to put their team up 1-0.
In the second quarter, the Mustangs extended their lead along with keeping up their energy on the defensive end. With 7:08 left in the quarter, Murray scored off a Barnes assist to give the Mustangs a 2-0 lead that they would take to the halftime break. Murray and Barnes both ended the night with one goal and one assist.
In the second half, the Mustangs brought the same high energy levels on the defensive end, not letting the Black Knights have anything easy. Charlottesville struggled getting shots on goal, and when they did, Ava Barnes let nothing get by. She ended the night with two saves.
“We made sure that we were staying hype before the game and kept our energy up, talked during halftime to make sure that we kept fighting even when we were up 2-0, and we just made sure that we were staying energized throughout the whole game,” said Murray.
The match never got any closer and with 7:52 left, the Mustangs put the game out of reach on a goal from Jane Robinson. That extended the lead to 3-0 in favor of Monticello, and that was where the score stayed at when the final buzzer sounded.
While the victory over a tough district opponent is always nice to celebrate, the Mustangs have a very tough matchup with Albemarle to prepare for next week.
“We have to elevate what we do and we have to do it better, Charlottesville is a very tough team and we were very fortunate tonight,” said Morra. “We were in the right place at the right time, we worked on some of the skill shots and penalty shots and that paid off for us, we’ll have to really be 110% every player doing their job and the coaches have to do our job to recognize where we need to make adjustments.”
The Mustangs move on to that tough home matchup with Albemarle on Monday, while Charlottesville will look to regroup Monday night at Orange against a Hornets squad that just knocked off Western Albemarle 2-0.