DERRY — Pinkerton Academy girls’ lacrosse coach Rob Daziel was concerned with how his team would match up on the draw with Londonderry entering Wednesday’s Division I quarterfinal game between the rival schools.
Daziel’s players proved his concern to be unfounded as the Astros secured all but four draw controls and easily earned a 19-6 victory over the Lancers on the new turf at Memorial Field.
The top-seeded Astros (18-1), who have won 15 straight, will face fourth-seeded Souhegan of Amherst in the semifinals Saturday at 7 p.m. at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter. Eighth-seeded Londonderry finished the season with a 9-10 record.
Kiley Davis, Lily Auger, Madison Daziel, Zoe Howe and Sydni Derry combined to secure 17 draw controls for the Astros.
Rob Daziel said Wednesday’s quarterfinal win was the best draw-control performance he has seen from his team this season.
“It’s something we talked about a lot because that’s where (Londonderry’s) strength is,” he said. “They’ve got some solid middies….They’re athletes there. That was the one concern area I had because when we played them last time, it was a little more of a 50-50 distribution. We talked about it and they (the players) responded.”
Pinkerton led, 13-3, at halftime after scoring the final nine goals of the first frame. That run ballooned to 14-0 before Londonderry’s Maddy Walden scored her team’s first second-half goal with 12:50 remaining. The Astros’ 14-0 run was powered by four goals each from Davis and Lauren Lisauskas.
Walden’s first goal of the game, which came with 15:48 left in the opening half, tied the game at 2-2 but Pinkerton answered with two Lisauskas tallies to retake the lead and never looked back.
“We started off kind of slow but we definitely came together and everyone played really good,” Auger said.
Lisauskas finished with a game-high six goals. Davis tallied four goals, Auger and Madison Daziel both recorded four points (two goals, two assists) and Howe added three goals and an assist for Pinkerton. The Astros also received a goal each from Allison Lamphere and Abby Jowett and a combined five saves from goalies Dani Martineau and Lauren Sweeney.
Walden and senior Sarah Duarte both scored twice and Grace Chicko registered a goal and two assists for the Lancers. Hannah McCutcheon also scored and senior goalie Morgan Brutus made five saves for Londonderry.
“They wanted it more,” Londonderry coach Scott Walden said of the Astros’ play on draw controls. “They definitely were flying to balls and plus we were always waiting behind coming to get them instead of coming in front.”