Marblehead tops Melrose in playoff opener

Published in the June 9, 2017 edition

THE MELROSE High girls' lacrosse team fell to Marblehead in the opening round of the Div. 2 North playoffs. (Donna Larsson photo) 

THE MELROSE High girls’ lacrosse team fell to Marblehead in the opening round of the Div. 2 North playoffs. (Donna Larsson photo)


MELROSE—The Melrose High girls’ lacrosse squad’s season came to an end on Wednesday, May 31 at Piper Field in Marblehead, where they were knocked out of the tournament after a taxing 17–5 loss to the Powerhouse Marblehead Magicians.

Things started early for the Magicians at Piper Field where they piled on 9 points through the initial fifteen minutes before the Raiders woke up on defense and started crashing the Marblehead shooters. The only goal for Melrose in this half came from Shannon Jones who found some space in the back of the net with an impressive shot to make the score 12-1 at the half.

The beginning of the second half showed Melrose was quicker to rise to the Marblehead challenge on defense. The Raiders let in 2 early goals from Magician heaters before Melrose rifled one through the five-hole to give the team some confidence back. After this score, a fierce back and forth ensued for several minutes, with both the Magicians and the Raiders playing hard to the ball with aggressive stick work and hustle.

With time running thin, the Raiders fiercely brought the ball down to the Magicians end where Lily Cunningham stepped up to punch the ticket with a low bounce shot that whizzed into the net for Melrose’s third point. But Cunningham wasn’t done with the score sheet yet. With about six minutes left— the Red Raiders set up another break into the Marblehead zone where Rachel DiFraia lobbed a tight pass over a horde of Marblehead defenders to Lily Cunningham who cradled the ball in stride, wound up and slung it home for another Raider score making things 17-4, Marblehead lead.

The final goal of the season came from Melrose’s Leonora Ivers who caught a beautiful pass from Lily Cunningham and pulled her own sleight of hand on the Magician goalie with an impressive fake before burying the shot over the Marblehead net-minders head for Melrose’s last goal. The Melrose girls lacrosse team lose this one to the Marblehead Magicians 17-5.

After the game, Melrose coach Cate Arkins spoke about the bright future of her young team, who will return next year having lost only three seniors: Olivia Ingemi, Leonora Ivers and Shannon Jones.  “Those three seniors were a big part of our success… everyone but three are coming back; mostly freshmen, and they’re all good athletes, good lacrosse players, I think they all have great potential with each person having room to improve and they want to improve. I think the future is very promising.”