Photography by David Creed
The #4 Whaler girls lacrosse team continues to blow by its competition in the Div. 4 MIAA State Tournament, beating the #20 South Hadley Tigers 17-8 Friday afternoon to move onto the Round of 8, where they will play the winner of #21 Watertown and #5 Ipswich. Nantucket was led by sophomore attacker Cydney Mosscrop and sophomore midfielder Emerson Pekarcik, who each scored six goals.
"There were a couple moments on defense where I was a little bit concerned but Hannah and Anna kept it together and had some great groundballs where they were able to settle things down," Lower said.
The game was out of reach early for the Tigers, as they entered halftime trailing 14-4 behind Mosscrop's six goals and sophomore midfielder Bailey Lower's three goals.
Mosscrop reached an impressive milestone, scoring her 100th career varsity goal. She is the second Nantucket player to accomplish that feat this season after Lower did it earlier in the season.
"Cydney is just a tenacious player," Lower said. "I think she was keeping track of it on her mind and could see it kind of clicking. She was determined and it was awesome to see her do it."
The young talent on this Whaler team should be startling to other programs across the state. Pekarcik now has 85 goals herself and if the Whalers continue to advance through the tournament, there is a strong likelihood she will also reach that 100 goal mark before becoming a junior.
Pekarcik (60 goals), Mosscrop (75 goals), and Lower (87 goals) have formed a three-headed monster upfront. For much of this game, those three controlled the play and made life easy on Nantucket's defense, which is very formidable with players such as seniors Anna Hudzik and Evelyn Fey and sophomores Hannah Evens and Brooke Damian in the backend in front of goalie Mimi Belanger, who will be playing Div. 2 lacrosse next year at Walsh University.
"This is the furthest we have ever made it since I have been coaching so the message is that what we have accomplished is a victory but if we can keep this momentum going and continue to play this way, which we can do with the benefit of another home game I think, we will play and have a chance to win more games and keep our season going," Lower said.
The Whalers will be hosting the #5 ranked Ipswich Tigers on Monday, June 13, at 4 p.m.