MAMARONECK – Can a loss be a positive thing?
Ask the Mamaroneck field hockey team. The same team that lost to Scarsdale for the first time in forever, then had a tie vs. Wilton, Connecticut.
The Tigers have now won eight consecutive games by shutout.
Number eight came Tuesday as the Tigers blanked previously unbeaten Clarkstown South 4-0.
Paige Danehy, who had a goal and an assist, called the Scarsdale loss “100 percent motivation.”
“We’re communicating more. It’s better stick-to-stick passes,” she said.
“Since the loss we’re really playing as a team,” added Molly Banks.
A 4-0 score isn’t horribly lopsided. But the penalty corner category was.
Mamaroneck had 14 penalty corners. Clarkstown South had one. And the Tigers got three of their goals off corners.
Although Clarkstown South coach Jordan Turner was unhappy with some calls and non-calls – he compared non-foot calls on the Tigers to Michael Jordan never being called for traveling – he told his team most Tiger corners were deserved.
“We’re learning. We’re growing. These are the games that will make us better,” he told his players at halftime, when they found themselves down 3-0 due to goals all registered in the last 7:45.
Player of the game: Banks earned player of the game honors with two goals and an assist.
Turning point: It was her goal with just 54 seconds left in the first half off a penalty corner and feed by Brigid Knowles that gave the Tigers a substantial three-goal cushion. That essentially put the game out of reach.
Stat line: Mamaroneck, which didn’t allow a shot on net, got its first goal and only non-corner goal with 7:45 left in the half on a shot by Sophie Brill, assisted by Danehy.
After an incredible save by Clarkstown South keeper Jackie McDonnell (eight saves) off a corner with 7:05 left in the half and then, if possible, an even better save by her defenseman Danielle Noia on a follow-up shot, another corner was called and Banks found Danehy on the far post for a beautiful tip-in.
McDonnell kept the Tigers at bay with a prone blocker save with 26:40 left, but Banks scored with 21:40 left on an Emily Mahland assist.
Quotables: “Were always looking for the open girl,” Banks said, noting the Tigers had set corner plays but adjusted on the fly.
“They’d have three passes and would go right to a pass and then right around me,” McDonnell said, although adding the Vikings marked much better in the second half.
“I just felt they were faster than us,” said Noia, who believed her team created corners for the Tigers with sloppy play in the circle.
But she said the four-goal loss to the defending Class A state champions “wasn’t too bad.”
“I felt we played pretty well,” Noia said.