Mountain Valley’s Rylee Sevigny, left, eyes the ball as she battles with Spruce Mountain’s Ryleigh Castonguay in a field hockey game in Jay on Monday afternoon. Tony Blasi/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

JAY — Mountain Valley’s Rylee Sevigny slipped away from a pack of players after taking a pass from her sister, Avery, and raced toward Spruce Mountain goalie Melissa Bamford in the second half.

Sevigney closed in and slipped the game-winning goal into the cage with 18:55 left in Monday’s field hockey game, sending the undefeated Falcons (5-0) soaring with a 1-0 victory over the Phoenix (3-2).

Once again, the Sevigny sisters had their hands in a Mountain Valley goal that amazingly held up for the rest of the contest despite the Phoenix’s best efforts to score.

That sisterly duet has been making things happen for Mountain Valley for quite some time. When practice rolls around, the pair work on passing the ball to each other.

“I was really nervous because, I don’t know, I haven’t been dribbling very good this game, and this was like the big breakaway — it was now or never,” Rylee Sevigney said. “I am happy. They are a really good defending team.”

“I was just praying she got it in because that was our big chance, I guess,” Avery Sevigney said. 

Mountain Valley goalie Nora Tag’s vigil also proved to be Spruce’s undoing, especially in the second half when the Phoenix kept pressuring Tag — who finished with 10 saves, including an incredible kick save late in the second half that prevented Spruce from tying the game.

The Falcons’ persistence throughout the game often forced the Phoenix to return to a defensive posture.

“I think we got better the second half,” Mountain Valley coach Melissa Forbes said. “After the halftime talk, the kids talked about persistence — keep at it, not one touch. Keep at it until (the ball) gets to the next player.

“I like that the young kids keep learning. I have seven underclassmen out there. They are getting better and learning.”

Forbes was also impressed with Rylee Sevigny’s goal.

“We talked about that,” Forbes said. “Sometimes the cross from her sister is hard. Sometimes, you have to just pass to each other, and one of them needs to take the goalie straight on, and they are both capable.”

Sure, the Phoenix were presented with a handful of opportunities to score, but those chances slipped away or the Falcons’ defense put the kibosh on Spruce.

“They (Phoenix) did a really good job out there,” Spruce Mountain coach Katie Trask said. “They are a great bunch. They work well together. We just couldn’t finish inside the circle there.

“We couldn’t even get any shots off the circle. They are a tough team. We knew what we needed to watch for. I think it was a great game both ways.”

Statistically speaking, the Falcons outshot the Phoenix 30-20, but Spruce held the advantage in corners, 11-10. 


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