GREENWICH, Conn. In a battle of the last two unbeaten girls lacrosse teams, Greenwich High School head coach Caitlin Keane said she knew the game would likely come down to one draw, one ground ball or one shot.
Unfortunately for the Cardinals, that one play went New Canaans way as Rams leading scorer Sarah Mannelly netted the game-winning goal with seven minutes to play. In a game that saw nine ties, neither team took a lead greater than two goals as the Rams handed Greenwich its first loss of the year, 12-10.
New Canaan had the edge in time of possession and winning draws, but Greenwich goalie Hannah Jeffrey almost single-handedly kept the Cardinals neck-and-neck with the Rams. Jeffrey racked up 12 saves, including several highlight reel stops on Olivia Hompe and Mannelly.
Greenwich entered halftime with a 6-5 lead, but New Canaans offense slowed the game to a crawl in the second half and was content to take its time and wear down the Greenwich defense. Mannelly finally cracked Jeffrey to keep the Rams perfect season alive.
Hannahs had a few great games in a row and shes really come into her own, Keane said. A few more shots on our side and things might have gone our way.
Claire Feeney led the Greenwich attack with four goals, each coming under heavy defensive pressure. Her most impressive was a behind-the-back shot she skipped off the ground past a helpless New Canaan goalie.
Sophie Wayne and Emily Johnson each added a pair of goals for Greenwich. Carolyn Paletta and Emma Christie rounded out the Greenwich scoring.
I think people thought we werent as strong as we are and I think we proved that were neck-and-neck with New Canaan, Keane said. My team had something to prove today and I believe in them.
Greenwich (12-1) will face another tough test when it hosts Wilton on Saturday in a 1 p.m. game.
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