Sports round-up, Aug. 25, 2022

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Granville's Raegan Swain (#10) will be one of the area's top returning field hockey players in 2022. (Photo by Stacie Arnhold)

Field hockey season holds excitement

By Keith Harrington

Field hockey is a sport that has been struggling to hang on locally in recent years as girls soccer and volleyball have grown in popularity, making it a challenge for some schools to muster the numbers to have a field hockey team.

North Warren, which was once a powerhouse, moved to soccer a couple of years ago and others struggle with low numbers.

Even with that being said, it’s not all doom and gloom. There’s a lot to look forward to locally in the 2022 high school field hockey season.

First, Hoosick Falls and Granville are likely to battle once again for the Adirondack-Wasaren League crown. The Golden Horde and Panthers shared the title in 2020. Hoosick Falls won the first meeting 4-0, with Granville winning the dramatic rematch 1-0 in OT off a corner with no time left on the clock.

Last season the Panthers swept the Golden Horde 6-0 and 4-3 in overtime during the regular season. It was the only two league losses for Granville. Hoosick Falls also eliminated the Golden Horde in the sectionals 2-0. The Panthers went on to win the sectional title, the regional crown before falling 6-1 to Whitney Point in the state championship game.

Granville was a young team a year ago but should be much more experienced this season. The Golden Horde should return plenty of firepower with Raegan Swain, Haylie Barber and Melissa Beaver. Swain was an Adirondack-Wasaren League First Team all-star last season. Barber was named to the league second team.

Goalie Megan Decker did an outstanding job replacing all-stater Lexyss Zovistoski last season and should be among the league’s best. Senior Kaylyn Gould and junior Megan Hover could also see time protecting the cage.

Natalie Williams, Catherine Gould Ashley Pratt, Ayva Ferrin and Korona Steves were all juniors last year and would provide senior leadership and vast experience if they all return. Junior Lauren Bascom was a key part of the Golden Horde defense as a sophomore.

Hoosick Falls will have to replace goalie Marissa Landry but lost only two other seniors. Emma McCart returns for her senior campaign. McCart scored an incredible 45 goals in 2021 to lead the Panthers to a 20-2 mark.

Adirondack-Wasaren League all-stars Gwyn Vincent and MacKenna Roberson also return for Hoosick Falls. Ava Kasulinous, Tatum Hickey and Kamryn Friel should also be key factors.

Salem-Cambridge also should not be discounted in the league race. The Generals were very young last year and will be loaded with returning players. Salem-Cambridge fell to Granville three times last year, all in very close matches. The Golden Horde nipped Salem-Cambridge 2-1 and 1-0 during the season and 1-0 in overtime in the sectionals.

Salem-Cambridge returns all-state selection Mary Kate McPhee who will be one of the top players in Section II. Taylor Cary and Lexy Cary also had strong seasons last year, earning Adirondack-Wasaren League all-star status. Goalie Brailyn Wright is eligible to return along with Claire Toleman, Alyce Harrington and Kyle Austin among others.

Greenwich and Corinth were rebuilding last year but given their history should both improve this season.

Across the border Fair Haven is a program on the rise. After struggling for a few seasons, the Slaters showed huge improvement in 2021.

Fair Haven’s most significant victory came in a 2-1 shocker over perennial power Windsor. Coach Allison Resnick has the program trending upwards after a trip to the state semifinals last fall.