The Pioneer girls’ lacrosse team hosted the Academy of the Sacred Heart from Bloomfield Hills on Monday used teamwork to create a decisive 18-4 win.
Before the game, Coach Zachary Maghes emphasized moving the ball and generating assists on offense. The team embraced the challenge and, per Maghes, “had the most assists in a game this year.”
Nine of Pioneer’s 18 goals were assisted while six players registered assists. Seniors Karleigh Marable, Quinn Moffett and Davney Holley all tallied two assists. Senior Reagan Malcolm, sophomore Julia Hunter and freshman Tess Yuhas each added one.
Pioneer didn’t shoot the highest percentage, scoring on 18 of 37 shots; however, the 48 percent shooting was mitigated by Pioneer’s active defense all over the field. Pioneer challenged ASH’s efforts to clear the ball and forced several turnovers in ASH’s defensive end. The turnovers within ASH’s defensive zone resulted in additional shot opportunities for Pioneer.
As with the assists, the seniors led the way with the scoring. Moffett, Holley and Malcolm all tallied hat tricks. Marable and Hunter both had two goals. The scoring was rounded out with a goal each from Yuhas, freshman Danielle Armstrong, and sophomores Ava Millman, Anna Muckstadt and Raedan Tapia-Stevens.
Another point of emphasis of the game for Pioneer was stopping the individual drives by the opponent. Early in the game, Pioneer wasn’t successful with this effort and allowed a couple of goals on hard drives by Sophia Yzerman of ASH. Pioneer’s defense responded by stiffening thereafter, punctuated by drawing a charge on the next drive by ASH. The active defense limited ASH to just seven shots and goalie Landon Harsch stopped three of those seven.
In recent weeks, Pioneer has worked on improving its draw controls, and just as in their last game against Saline, the attention during practice paid dividends. Pioneer dominated the draw controls in the first half as it took a commanding lead in the game which ASH never challenged.
Tess Yuhas led the way with four draw controls in the pivotal opening half. “She placed the ball where she wanted it,” Yuhas said. “The placement was the key to her success.”
Pioneer will take the field again on Wednesday against Skyline High School. Wednesday’s game will be senior night where the program recognizes the six seniors on the team.
Story by Woody Wagons