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Wednesday, April 24, 2024
The Observer

Women's Interhall Football: Walsh still undefeated, beats Badin

Walsh 29, Badin 6

Despite Badin's strongest efforts, Walsh remain undefeated with a 29-6 victory over the Bullfrogs. Unlike their past two games against Pangborn and Cavanuagh, this week the Wild Women dominated from beginning to end.

"It felt pretty nice," junior Lindsay Schanzer said. "It's good to be able to relax and get some of the girls in who don't always get a lot of playing time."

Walsh began its animated cheering even before the game began, and saw its effects when their defense forced a punt off Badin's first possession after failing to convert a first down.

Senior Meghan Hadley quickly finished off the drive with a touchdown run, giving Walsh an early lead.

Soon after their first touchdown, the Walsh defense proved itself with a safety, regaining possession once again. From there, the offense took over, with a slew of passes that eventually resulted in another touchdown caught by Schanzer.

Walsh's defense continued its strong showing with an interception, and the offense converted the turnover into yet another touchdown by Schanzer with just over a minute left in the first half.

With a comfortable lead, the second half gave them room to play fresh legs and players who don't normally see playing time.

"It was nice that we were able to give everyone some real-game experience because everyone had played so well," Hadley said.

Even with the less experienced players, Walsh was still able to come through with a touchdown.

The second half also gave Badin room to show its strengths after adjusting to Walsh's style. A strong set of completed passes between freshman receiver Ashley Okonta and sophomore quarterback Ryan Cooney led to a touchdown by Okonta.

"It feels good to have a comfortable victory and not have to come back from behind," coach Jeremiah Herman said. "If we execute like this every game, that's what will get us to the Stadium."

Badin will take on Pasquerilla West Thursday while Walsh has a bye week.

Lewis 33, Breen-Phillips 0

After a rough 0-2 start, Lewis earned its first win of the season Sunday with a shutout victory over Breen-Phillps.

Senior quarterback Catherine Guarnieri scored five total touchdowns, throwing three and running for two more. Freshman receiver Connaught Blood caught two of Guarnieri's touchdown passes for the Chicks including the first of the game on a 30-yard reception over two Breen-Phillips defenders.

The Lewis defense used an interception, a sack and numerous turnovers on downs to stifle the Babes' offense throughout the game. Sophomore Margot DeBot was crucial in saving the shutout, with an interception in the Chicks' end zone and a crucial stop of a threatening run by the Babes' quarterback in the last play of the game. 

"It was nice to win, we played really well," Guarnieri said. "Our defense is really a key to our play and our offense has stepped up recently."

Despite some successful drives and big plays, the Breen-Phillips offense was unable to capitalize and put points on the board. Freshman quarterback Stefani Santeramo connected with sophomore Lauren Kalinoski for multiple clutch gains, including a 40-yard pass at the start of the second half which brought them within a few yards of the end zone.

"Our team did great. The offense ran great routes," Santeramo said. "Next game we'll do a lot better."

The Babes expressed satisfaction over the team's improvement over last week and their ability to adjust in order to compensate for some costly injuries.

"We're still solidifying our defense, trying to figure out who fits where," senior captain Stephanie Wuerdeman said. "As soon as we have that down, we'll be doing a lot better."

The Babes hopes that with the necessary changes to their strategy, they will put up a solid performance on Tuesday against Welsh Family.

In similar fashion, after having made the necessary changes to their strategy, the Chicks hope to carry their momentum into their game next week against Howard.

"We want to keep winning," Guarnieri said. "It feels a lot better than losing."

McGlinn 13, Farley 13

With less than a minute left in the game and clinging to a 13-6 lead, the McGlinn defense needed one defensive stop to finish off the game and get their first win in defense of last season's title.

Farley sophomore wide receiver Laura Yoviene had other ideas. Yoviene slipped past the McGlinn defense to haul in a 25-yard touchdown from sophomore quarterback Megan Bastedo in the game's final minute to tied up the game for good.

"We faked it short, and [the cornerback] bit on it," Yoviene said. "The other girls cleared out and left me alone. Megan threw a great ball and hit me in stride."

The frenetic finish capped a great comeback from Farley, who trailed nearly the whole game. McGlinn began the game with a dazzling passing game that was unstoppable at times. Sophomore quarterback Lauren Miller threw two long touchdown passes and consistenly hit junior wide receiver Kathleen Stanley to move the ball down the field. McGlinn failed to score in the second half, struggling to build on their 13-0 halftime lead.

"You have to give a lot of credit to Farley for making the adjustments," Miller said. "I don't think we made the necessary adjustments to counter them."

With 10 minutes left in the second half, Farley began its comeback with a bit of luck. With the ball at midfield, Bastedo lofted a pass into the end zone where it was swatted down by several McGlinn defenders. However, trailing sophomore receiver Katie Smith grabbed the ball before it hit the ground and walked into the end zone to put Farley on the board and make the score 13-6.

After Yoviene's last minute miracle tied the score, McGlinn was left wondering what could have been.

"We had a thirteen point lead. We were hoping we were going to win," Miller said. "We're disappointed but we did take a step forward and we learned from this game and we'll win next week."

Farley on the other hand was ecstatic after evading what seemed to be sure defeat.

"We would have liked a win," Yoviene said. "But obviously we're really happy with the comeback."

Both teams will gear up for Tuesday night matchups, as McGlinn takes on Pasquerilla East and Farley battles the Howard.

Pangborn 28, Lyons 0

After two tough losses, Pangborn (1-2) proved itself as a force to be reckoned with by dominating Lyons (0-2) 28-0 Sunday.

The first half was plagued with penalty after penalty, frustrating both teams as a new rule prohibits any sign of raised elbows while blocking. After going back and forth with forced punts when neither team could convert to a first down, the game took a change of pace when Lyons senior quarterback Claire Connell came out for the rest of the game with an injury.

Freshman Erica Miller took over as quarterback.

"They weren't the best circumstances, but we still kept our spirits up," Miller said.

After Connell's injury, the Lions struggled to advance the ball, and Pangborn's enthusiasm finally paid off with an interception by senior co-captain Meghan Bescher on a Lyons fourth down. 

After an outside run by Pangborn senior quarterback Gabby Tate, a string of successful passes, and one final run by Tate into the end zone, Pangborn got its first touchdown. 

This only started what would become a powerful display of force by both Pangborn's offense and defense. The first half ended with a sack by Pangborn, shutting down the Lyons offense.

After another succession of passes, Tate completed a pass to freshman Kristin Ruekert for the touchdown, which was topped off with the extra point, leaving the Phoxes leading 14-0.

The defensive line came through once again, sacking the Lyons quarterback twice and forcing the punt yet another punt.

Pangborn continued its touchdown streak, with another combination of runs by Tate and a catch by Bescher.

The Phoxes could not be stopped, quickly regaining possession from Lyons with an interception by Bescher. The turnover led to a touchdown by Tate and a final extra point by senior Annie Kotz.

"It felt amazing to win today. Our first two games we tried our hardest, but lost. Today we got a lot of people involved and came out a lot more confident, which is exactly what we needed to do," Tate said.

Now that they know what they are capable of, the women of Pangborn will undoubtedly find future success.

Thursday, Pangborn will take on Ryan at 8 p.m. while Lyons prepares for a showdown with Cavanaugh at 9 p.m. 

Welsh Family 7, Pasquerilla East 6

Welsh Family (1-2) took down Pasquerilla East (2-1) by a score of 7-6 in a defensive battle Sunday.

A joint effort by Whirlwind junior Jenna Spizzirri and freshman Laura DiLuia forced an interception on Welsh Family's own two-yard line in the final minute of the game to prevent the Pyros from a orchestrating a come-from-behind victory.

Both teams scored on their first drives of the game. The Whirlwind's only touchdown came after a series of successful passes by senior quarterback Demi Hueth. Sophomore Charlotte Seasly caught the pass for what proved to be the game-winning extra point.

Pasquerilla East quarterback Tara Pillai followed the Whirlwind touchdown with a touchdown pass to sophomore Kristin Mannion. The Whirlwind's newest defensive star, DiLuia batted down the Pryos' attempt at an extra point to preserve the lead.

Despite some solid offensive efforts during the remainder of the game, both teams would fail to make it to the end zone. Pillai had several short completions for the Pyros, favoring freshmen receivers Erica Chenard and Jackie Urban. However, PE was unable to capitalize on these opportunities. Welsh Fam also appeared to score on the final drive of the first half on a Hueth pass to Vicky Moreno, but a questionable spot ruled the completion just short of the end zone, leading to an eventual turnover on downs.

"We're really disappointed," Pillai said. "We're going to bounce back for Tuesday."

The second half of the game was a head-to-head defensive battle, as each team forced multiple punts. Senior captain Tara Schimpf sacked the Pryos' quarterback during their final drive of the game to set the tone for the Whirlwind's final defensive stand.

"I think we looked great as a team. We had some key plays and big stops," Schimpf said. 

Schimpf highlighted the team's excitement about their first win of the season, particularly against a tough undefeated Pyros squad.

"We finally clicked today. We got our first win and we're excited that everything is working well," Schimpf said.

Pasquerilla West 30, Cavanaugh 6

Pasquerilla West forced the use of the mercy rule Sunday with a commanding 30-6 victory over Cavanaugh.

The Purple Weasels showed both outstanding offense and dominating defense, which helped them in their crushing defeat of the Chaos.

"Cavanaugh had an incredible team," Pasquerilla West captain Cynthia Curley said. "I cannot believe we just mercy ruled them." 

Purple Weasels quarterback junior Simone Bigi made contact with almost every receiver she threw to, although she did throw one interception. Bigi threw three touchdown passes and ran for one. Her top receivers were captain Cynthia Curley who scored twice, junior Mary Forr, and freshman Alice Yerokun.

"Our running and passing game finally clicked," Curley said. 

Pasquerilla West also had a defense that smothered the Chaos attack. The Purple Weasels had Cavanaugh's number all afternoon. The defense picked off three of the Chaos' passes, two of which resulted in touchdowns.

Cavanaugh had a tough first half, but started to pull it together in the second half. Quarterback sophomore Megan Robertson threw a touchdown during the Chaos' first possession of the second half. Robertson also had a great running game gaining over twenty yards on one play. 

"This was the most disappointing interhall game that I have ever played in," Cavanaugh senior captain Sarah Cline said.

The Chaos' defense did not seem to mesh at all during this game, and it looked like they have a lot of work to do. Their offense on the other hand finally was able to get it together to make the second half a little more exciting. 

"We did do better the second half," Cline said. "[But] we definitely have some work to do."

"Other teams better look out," said Curley. "We definitely have an incredible team."