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By: Seth Kinker, skinker@thesuntimesnews.com

The Dexter Dreadnaught Field Hockey team (15-1-2) tied the Saline Hornets (9-1-3) on Sept. 16 when the Hornets scored a late second half goal

On Oct. 7, it was the Dreads who not only tied the game with a late second-half goal but won it when they scored another on a set piece in the second half to win 3-2 at home. 

“One thing we were more aware of (this time) was how they shift their top players,” said Dread head coach Trish Machemer. “and us being more aware of how they shift them, we had to shift ours to adjust.”

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The Dreads had their chances early, earning four corners in the opening five minutes. 

Dread junior, and Michigan Field Hockey commit, Abby Tamer scored just over five minutes into the game, a solo effort as she got past two defenders before firing her shot to give the Dreads a 1-0 lead. 

Not deterred, the Hornets would answer a couple of minutes later. Although the Dreads controlled possession for most of the night the Hornets found their chances on the counter attack and right flank. 

A ball served from that right side on a counter attack was cleaned up by Hornet senior Bridget Skelly, who was cutting down the middle and towards the goal and got  a touch on the ball in front of the net to tie it with 22:46 in the first half. 

Less than five minutes after that, the Hornets struck again. A corner taken by sophomore Maya Prasad was served out and found its way to senior Erin Reilly. Reilly wound up and shot and the ball took a deflection right back to Prasad who fired it home to give the Hornets  a 2-1 lead with 17:38 in the first half. 

The Dreads would have two more corners but nothing came of them, meanwhile the Hornets forced one turnover with around ten minutes left that made Dread senior Maggie Jones come out for a kick save and had one more look on a corner. 

Prasad passed it in to senior Ali Groth with a few minutes left  in the half but her shot went just left of the goal. 

“We were shooting at the goal,” said Machemer on the first half. “Their goals came on backdoors, the first was a mess, a scrum. Those happen, all count the same.” 

In the second half, neither team could get going early. The Hornets started the half possessing better but with just over ten minutes to go, the Dreads struck on a set piece to tie the game. 

After Tamer drew a corner, Dread junior, and Maryland Field Hockey commit, Kylee Niswonger passed it in to a waiting Tamer who fired it home with 11:16 left. 

Then, with 4:37 left, the Dreads would strike  again. Dread junior Faith Anderson had a key steal and the Hornets had to foul her, bringing up a Dread corner. 

Niswonger swung a similar pass to Tamer at the top of the crease and Tamer fired a shot that Niswonger was able to get  a touch on to fire it past the keeper into the net for the 3-2 Dread. 

“When it went out, I saw the post player come out to the right,” said Niswonger on the goal. “I put  myself in between the goalie and the  post player and Abby (Tamer) hit  it perfectly.” 

“Ky getting that tip,” said Machemer. “That’s what we asked. She was like, ‘I was just going to get something on it, I don’t care what it was, just  something.’ It wasn’t pretty but it worked.”

The Hornets  best chance came with 2:30 left, Reilly had a shot  from 25-yards out but it went wide of the goal. 

Along with Tamer defending Reilly, it was a team effort on defense to come away with the win. Maya Calloway, Claire Vaughn, Erin Baldwin, and Rachel Gesell all had solid days on defense and in the midfield holding the Hornets at bay. In the first meeting of these two teams, senior goalie Maggie Jones was sick. Tonight, she helped her team to a key conference win. 

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