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Women’s Interhall: Phoxes face defending champ Purple Weasels

JARED JEDICK, PETER REISENAUR, MIKE GOTIMER, GRIFFIN DASSATTI and MEGHAN MCMAHON | Friday, September 28, 2007

Pangborn and Pasquerilla West, two Gold League powerhouses, face off Sunday at 5 p.m. on Riehle East field.

The Purple Weasels starters gave up their first points of the season in a 6-0 loss to Welsh Family in their last game. The team picked up two wins with stellar defense prior to that against Lewis and Breen- Phillips.

“We are good on both sides of the ball, but I think our strength has to be our defense,” senior captain Tina Martinek said. “Lewis only got passed our 50-yard line once, and Breen Phillips only scored on our back-ups.”

Freshman quarterback Grace Orians leads the powerful offense that hopes to rebound from Thursday’s disappointing showing.

“She is good both running and passing,” Martinek said. “She is great.”

The Weasels hope to work in some new trick plays to keep their opposition off balance, but for the most part, they are sticking to what they do best.

On defense, the Weasels will be looking to sophomore linebacker Cynthia Curley and freshman lineman Mary Forr to stop the Pangborn attack.

The defending champions have high expectations for the rest of the season.

“I think we are going to win it all again,” Martinek said. “We are as good if not better than we were in the last two years. We have really good chances.”

Pangborn is hoping to play the spoiler, as they enter the game with momentum on their sides. The Phoxes are coming off of a 16-0 win over Lyons. The team has a 2-1 record, with its one loss coming to Welsh Family.

Sophomore quarterback Gabby Tate hopes to carry over from her performance against Lyons last week. Tate and sophomore captain Meghan Bescher connected for two touchdowns on the day, and hope to find the same holes in the Weasels’ defense.

Pangborn’s defense has also stepped up as of late. The Phoxes hope that their shutout of Lyon’s is a sign of good things to come the rest of the season.

Farley vs. Howard

In a matchup between two potential title contenders, the Howard Ducks face Farley’s Finest on Sunday at 1 p.m. in a fight for second place in the Blue League.

Both teams are coming off strong showings, and both feel that they can be highly competitive in the upcoming game.

Not only is Farley going to have to deal with a rejuvenated defense, but they will also have to face off against Bishop’s fast-paced offense.

The Farley defense has proved to be up to the challenge so far this season. The Finest have yet to allow a touchdown this season.

But the Farley offense is still a work in progress. They have only made it to the end zone once so far this year.

Pasquerilla East vs. Cavanaugh

Pasquerilla East and Cavanaugh look to get their seasons on track after slow starts against each other Sunday afternoon.

The Pyros come into the game at 0-1-2, but P.E. junior captain Megan Becker is hoping that star players – co-captain and senior wide receiver Caroline Nally and sophomore wide receiver Tara Pillai – will continue to contribute to the PE offense.

“Our defense is pretty strong and our offense is improving,” Becker said. “We just need more consistency. It’s been one or two plays in every game that have really hurt us.”

Becker said the team is looking to eliminate those mistakes Sunday and come out with a win over Cavanaugh.

The Chaos (1-2) hope to continue their winning ways after beating McGlinn to pick up their first victory of the season in their last game.

“This season has been rough so far,” senior captain Tarah Brown said. “But we’re coming off a win last week and things are coming together for us in practice.”

Brown is confident in her team as they head into the game this weekend.

“Our defense is solid as always and we’ve been working on picking up our momentum on offense.” she said.

Lyons vs. Welsh Family

Playoff contender Lyons will take on the undefeated Welsh Family Whirlwinds Sunday at 4 p.m.

After a devastating setback at the hands of Pangborn last Sunday, Lyons’ inexperienced but talented backfield – with freshman running back Neva Lundy and sophomore quarterback Claire Connell – hopes to turn their team around and lead it in an upset over the Whirlwinds.

Lundy and Connell combined for 20 points in their first game, against Badin. But things did not go so well against the top-notch Pangborn defense. The Lions offense was kept out of the pay dirt in a 16-0 defeat.

“We had a bit of a problem finding a rhythm on offense last Sunday, so this week at practice we focused on making sure we will be able to move the ball like we did during our first game,” senior captain Katie Mackin said.

Lyons will need Connell and Lundy to step up as well as their defense in order to pick up a win Suday.

Welsh Family, led by a number of returning starters, hopes to out duel the young duo by countering with a seasoned, veteran defense along with a strong offense behind junior quarterback Jenni Gargula. Gargula has led Welsh’s offense to 53 points in their first two games.

“We want to build upon all the good things we have been doing in the past weeks. We expect to keep improving and to keep focusing on our goals,” senior captain Kelly Bushelle said.

This mentality seems to have been taken to heart by her team who has not shown any signs of weakness this season.

“I think the strength of our team is how well we work together,” Bushelle said.

Breen-Philips vs. Lewis

Breen-Philips and Lewis are looking for a turnaround to salvage the rest of their seasons Sunday at 3 p.m.

The Babes dropped to 1-3 on the year with a 27-0 loss to Lyons earlier this week. The Chicks (0-2-1) are still seeking their first win of the season.

Despite their record, Lewis is capable of taking the ball to the house. Sophomore quarterback Catherine Guarnieri rallied her team in the second half of their game against Welsh Family for two late touchdowns. Lewis scored 13 points but could not catch up to the Whirlwinds.

The Babes are led by quarterback Melissa Meagher and receiver Tara McCarron, both juniors. Breen-Phillips’ freshman class is especially athletic and should pose a great threat once they perfect their ability to work together.

The Babes have the potential to make plenty of big plays on offense, but they have played inconsistently. Dropped passes have often stymied good drives, but Meagher hopes the team can put some points on the board against Lewis.

“It will be a tight match because Lewis has a lot of talent,” Meagher said. “But I think we will pull out the win.”