Woodstock girls lacrosse falls in D-II title game

Woodstock High lacrosse players, from left, Alice Cayer, Maggie Mello, Kassidy Haley and Hannah Gubbins, react after losing the Vermont Division II title game, 8-4, to U32 on June 10, 2023, at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com

Woodstock High lacrosse players, from left, Alice Cayer, Maggie Mello, Kassidy Haley and Hannah Gubbins, react after losing the Vermont Division II title game, 8-4, to U32 on June 10, 2023, at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com —Tris Wykes

Woodstock High's Isabel Konijnenberg watches her shot carom off U32 goaltender Emily Fuller during the Vermont Division II teams' meeting in the June 10, 2023, state title game at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 won, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com.

Woodstock High's Isabel Konijnenberg watches her shot carom off U32 goaltender Emily Fuller during the Vermont Division II teams' meeting in the June 10, 2023, state title game at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 won, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. —Tris Wykes

Woodstock High goaltender Audrey Emery tracks a shot headed wide of her cage during the Vermont Division II finals against U32 on June 10, 2023, at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 won, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com

Woodstock High goaltender Audrey Emery tracks a shot headed wide of her cage during the Vermont Division II finals against U32 on June 10, 2023, at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 won, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com —Tris Wykes

Woodstock High's Lila Beckwith (30) avoids U32's Megan Ognibene during the Vermont Division II teams' June 10, 2023, meeting in the state finals at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 won, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com

Woodstock High's Lila Beckwith (30) avoids U32's Megan Ognibene during the Vermont Division II teams' June 10, 2023, meeting in the state finals at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 won, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com —Tris Wykes

Woodstock High's Claudia Shoemaker, left, shadows U32's Grace Nostrant during the Vermont Division II teams' June 10, 2023, meeting in the state finals at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 wo, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com

Woodstock High's Claudia Shoemaker, left, shadows U32's Grace Nostrant during the Vermont Division II teams' June 10, 2023, meeting in the state finals at Norwich University in Northfield, Vt. U32 wo, 8-4. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com —Tris Wykes

By TRIS WYKES

Valley News Staff Writer

Published: 06-11-2023 5:36 PM

NORTHFIELD, Vt. — Woodstock High entered Saturday’s Vermont Division II girls lacrosse championship game with a core group of athletes looking to add to field hockey and ice hockey crowns earned earlier in the school year.

For much of the first half against U32, the Wasps looked capable of pulling off the trifecta, leading by a pair of goals 11 minutes before intermission. From there, however, the Raiders took over, notching the next five tallies en route to an 8-4 triumph at Norwich University.

U32 (16-2) prevailed for the 13th consecutive contest, mixing speed and grit to snap Woodstock’s five-game winning streak.

““They fought hard for ground balls and really won a lot more than us,” said Wasps coach Amanda Hull, who guided her fifth-seeded troops to a semifinal upset of top-seeded Hartford. “They’re very fast and had a lot of pressure on our defense, so it took longer for us to clear our end than is typical.

“They work really well together, looking for each other all over the field to make passes.”

Claudia Shoemaker scored twice as Woodstock built a 3-1 lead. The second-seeded Raiders scored twice during the first half’s final two minutes and entered the break up, 5-3.

“Momentum goes up and down during a lacrosse game and I figured ours would be coming back,” Hull said.

Senior goaltender Audrey Emery was a standout for the Wasps, making 12 saves. Hull said her 9-8 team was hampered early in its difficult schedule by oozing home fields, forcing it to practice mostly indoors until late April.

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“Our whole campus was soaking wet and we had to find little corners that were dry,” the coach said. “We figured some things out and grew exponentially in just a few weeks.”

Woodstock was 7-6 last season and then graduated nine players while Hull, an elementary school teacher, was out on maternity leave. The Wasps last reached the title game in 2017 and entered the season 21-51 since that time. The 2023 campaign suggests the program is again on the rise.

“These girls have a work ethic and a drive to win that you don’t see every year,” Hull said. “It was really fun to coach girls like that, who were ready for the postseason and ready to put the work in and fight until the bitter end.”

Shoemaker finished with a hat trick and Hannah Gubbins also scored.

Tris Wykes can be reached at twykes@vnews.com.