BOSTON – For the first time in program history, the Newburyport girls lacrosse team has reached the top of the mountain, beating Bromfield 7-6 to win the Division II state championship.
After a back and forth first half, Newburyport’s defense completely shut down the vaunted Bromfield offense in the second half, and once the Clippers gained possession with just under six minutes to play, they executed a textbook stall and prevented the Trojans from ever touching the ball again.
Having started the season 0-3, Newburyport head coach Catherine Batchelder was speechless once the final horn sounded and the Clippers players began to celebrate on the field.
“It’s so improbable and it’s so incredibly mind boggling that we just won the state championship,” Batchelder said. “Someone should have bet on us in Vegas they would have made a lot of money.”
Coming into the game, the big question was whether or not Newburyport (16-4) could stop the Bromfield (21-2) offense. Bromfield’s two top players, sophomore Sophia Turchetta and senior Jackie Planchet, combined to score more than 300 points this season, and in last week’s semifinal against Wayland, Turchetta scored seven goals all by herself to carry the Trojans to the finals.
In the game’s opening minutes, it appeared as if Turchetta would run roughshod over the Newburyport defense too. Turchetta scored the first goal of the game roughly two minutes in to give Bromfield an early lead, and by halftime she had already extended her total to five.
Despite the trouble’s posed by Turchetta, Newburyport’s offense was more than up for the task of dealing with Bromfield’s defense. Senior Kelly Conway scored on a nice pass from senior Julia Kipp to tie the game at 1-1 about two minutes after Turchetta’s first goal, and for the rest of the half the two teams traded goals, with the only extended run coming from Newburyport, when the Clippers scored two straight goals to go from being down 2-1 to up 3-2 around 10 minutes into the game.