WHITEMARSH — When Springfield-Montco's field hockey team played Plymouth Whitemarsh Thursday afternoon at PW's Victory Fields, the Spartans found that their own offensive circle seemed like a foreign country that was alien to them — and extremely hard to visit.
The host Colonials acted like hardened immigration officials at the border — stopping the Spartans whenever they approached. More importantly, the PW girls never let the Spartans clear customs. Time after time, it was a case of "Entry Denied.'
Plymouth Whitemarsh encountered no such problems. The Colonials scored frequently and continued their undefeated run in Suburban One League American Conference competition with a 5-0 whitewashing of the Spartans.
The win lifted the Colonials' overall record to 10-1 and their conference record to 7-0. Plymouth Whitemarsh has logged shutouts in five of its seven conference victories while outscoring the opposition 43-3.
"Today, we tried to keep possession of the ball,' said PW's standout senior midfielder Rachel Konowal. "If they don't have the ball, they can't score.'
The Spartans not only couldn't score, they couldn't keep Rachel Konawal and her twin sister Courtney Konowal from scoring. Courtney scored the Colonials' first and last goal and Rachel sandwiched a natural hat trick in between.
"One of the things we really focus on is getting the first goal,' said Courtney Konowal, PW's stellar center forward.
Courtney Konowal accomplished the mission with a goal with just under seven minutes elapsed in the game.
"Miss P (PW coach Marianne Paparone) stresses that scoring the first goal makes life a lot easier,' said Rachel Konoweal, who is the older twin by one minute.
Amazingly, Plymouth Whitemarsh only led 1-0 at halftime. In the first half, the Colonials outshot their guests 13-1. They also had a 2-0 advantage in penalty corners.
Plymouth Whitemarsh got an insurance goal just over three minutes into the second half on a beautiful play that had Konowal written all over it.
Courtney dribbled into the circle on the right side and fed a perfect pass to Rachel who was moving in on goal at the center. Rachel received the pass and then sent a hard shot to the right of Springfield goalie Kim Macahalette and into the Spartans' cage.
Three minutes later, PW scored on a similar play only it was Allison Spinelli who made the cross from the right side. Once again, Rachel Konowal was there to provide the finishing touch.
The fourth goal came on a penalty stroke which Rachel Konowal drilled into the lower left side of the Springfield goal. The final goal was scored by Courtney Konowal off an assist from Rita Lynn Trainer with 13 seconds left.
The Colonials, who finished with a 23-4 advantage in shots, logged five penalty corners. Springfield had just one corner and that didn't occur until just 6:30 remained in the game.
"Defensively, we're trying to work on our spacing and positioning,' said Courtney Konowal. "Aurora Mills has improved a lot and so has Allison Spinelli. Allison is a brick wall back there.'
Rachel Konowal said, "This year, Sierra Spencer took on a leadership role for our defense. We're also getting a lot of help from Monica Mellon and Grace McGuire.'
Paparone, whose team has scored 53 goals in 11 games and allowed just eight, said, "We have a mix — four seniors, one junior, a bunch of sophomores and one freshman. Three of the sophomores got significant playing time last season. They're young but they're playing like veterans.'
Springfield's long-time coach Linda Nixon said, "We expected a really good game — and it was. I think Plymouth Whitemarsh played good defense. Our girls played well too but they're young and still learning.'
Springfield-Montco 0 0 — 0
Plymouth Whitemarsh 1 4 — 5
Plymouth Whitemarsh goals: Rachel Konowal 3, Courtney Konowal 2.