Polytech girls lacrosse team tops Smyrna 11-7, improves to 3-0

Polytech head coach Lynn Richardson

SMYRNA — The Polytech High girls’ lacrosse team wanted to go into spring break on a good note.

Still undefeated, the Panthers will enjoy 11 consecutive days over break without a game.

Polytech held on in the second half for an 11-7 victory at Smyrna High on Wednesday afternoon. The Panthers have opened the 2018 campaign with a 3-0 record.

Polytech took a 9-2 lead into halftime but the Eagles rallied to set up a nervy ending for the Panthers. When Smyrna cut it to within four goals, Polytech was able to control possession to run out the clock.

Smyrna did not touch the ball in the final four minutes.

“I’m really pleased with the last four minutes of the game,” said Polytech coach Lynn Richardson. “For this early in the season, we had the poise to pull it out and hold possession. We were comfortable with being up, that’s something we really haven’t practice much so early in the season.”

Senior Madilyn McKay paced the Panthers with four goals while senior Cecilia Carter and freshman Claire Fuchs each recorded a hat-trick.

Polytech opened the game with seven unanswered goals before Smyrna got on the board.

But Smyrna outscored Polytech 5-2 in the second half. Madeline Wilbur led the Eagles (0-2) with three goals and Emma Mayew chipped in two.

“Smyrna is a new team but they’re an athletic team and they got some kids out there with some skills,” Richardson said. “We told the kids they would fight from whistle to whistle. We got a little complacent there and our offense slowed down a little. They played a sagging defense on us and we couldn’t get much in transition.

Polytech outshot Smyrna 32-12 but the Eagles were kept in the game by goalie Katelynn Porter who made 15 saves.

“Their goalie did a really nice job and made some saves that really changed the momentum for them,” Richardson said. “We were excited to have the competition but we’re really excited to be 3-0 going into break.”

Jessica Bergold and Madison Graham also netted a goal for Smyrna. Jazmine Winfield added the other goal for Polytech.

The Panthers only had to replace two players from last year’s squad which went 10-4 and reached the state tournament.

Polytech also retunred its entire defensive, anchored by goalie Shannon Stephan.

“She’s tough and our whole defense is all seniors,” Richardson said. “We have some newcomers helping out. We still have a lot of work to do.”

The Panthers opened the year with back-to-back victories over Sussex Academy and Newark. They downed Sussex Academy 16-2 last week before a 22-1 win at Newark on Monday.

The schedule does get harder though when Polytech returns from break.

The Panthers have three games in one week beginning with a contest against James M. Bennett of Maryland on Monday, April 9 at 4 p.m. at the DE Turf Sports Complex. Polytech also hosts Caesar Rodney (Wednesday, April 11 at 4 p.m.) and Padua (Friday, April 13, 5 p.m.) that week.

“We know we got a tough week ahead of us when we get back,” Richardson said. “That’s what it’s all about. A little competition is good.”

Reach staff writer Tim Mastro at tmastro@newszap.com

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