Sabers rock defending champs in girls lacrosse

Staff photo by Jason Orfao Souhegan’s Sammi Jay evades pressure from Pinkerton’s Emily Sharretts on Tuesday during the Sabers’ 11-5 victory at Calvetti Family Field in Amherst.

AMHERST – Plenty can change in a week, and the Souhegan girls lacrosse team is back on track.

The Sabers scored the first five goals and rolled to an 11-5 victory over defending champion Pinkerton on Tuesday night at Calvetti Family Field.

Seven days earlier, the Sabers (11-2) started slow on their home turf and suffered a surprising 8-7 setback to fifth-place Londonderry.

“I’m not sure that we entirely showed up for that (Londonderry) game,” Souhegan coach Maren Petropulos said. “I think it was a great lesson at this time of the year to kind of be put up against that. Londonderry is a great team and the coaches knew that, but I don’t think the girls did.”

Souhegan was ready from the opening whistle against the Astros (10-3), as Sammi Jay scored the first of her three goals only 49 seconds into the game.

Jay and Abby Cranney each finished with three goals and two assists.

Brigid Casey scored twice, Taylor Clark tallied a goal and three assists, while Emma Estabrook and Savannah Behn also found the back of the net.

The Sabers were patient on offense, converting on 11 of 13 shots on goal. Pinkerton fired 14 shots on net, but Souhegan goalie Meaghan Allard loomed large with nine saves.

“I think (the win) definitely elevates our confidence,” Allard said. “That Londonderry game really fired us up and we really anticipated this game and got into it.”

Lauren Lisauskas provided Pinkerton’s lone first-half tally, while Avery Drouin and Lillian Auger each scored a pair of goals for the Astros in the second half.

“Pinkerton is so athletic and they run a really quick offense,” Petropulos said. “Our defense was fabulous tonight. They didn’t get suckered into anything and they stayed on task.”

The Astros trimmed a seven-goal deficit to 8-4, but the Sabers secured the win.

“We played extremely flat and gave a good team a good lead,” Pinkerton coach Rob Daziel said. “Once we started playing the game, we competed.”

Souhegan’s victory was a positive first step into a challenging week.

The Sabers will look to carry the momentum into Friday’s duel with first-place Bedford (14-1) and Sunday’s matchup against a strong Massachusetts foe in Norwell (9-4).