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ND Women’s Interhall: Flag football kicks off

Mary Green, Alexandra Lane, Renee Griffin, Megan Winkel, Eric Richelsen, Cornelius McGrath | Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Pasquerilla West 6, Cavanaugh 0
A fourth-quarter interception on second-and-goal by senior defensive back Maria Harmon all but sealed Pasquerilla West’s victory Sunday as the Purple Weasels beat Cavanaugh 6-0.
The game remained scoreless for most of the first half, with the teams trading fruitless possessions. Pasquerilla West (1-0) went three-and-out on its first two possessions before reaching the end zone on the third on a four-yard rushing touchdown by senior captain and quarterback Rachel Rogers to go up 6-0 just before halftime.
Weasels senior captain and linebacker Breezi Toole said her team’s win represented the culmination of hard work by both rookies and veteran players.
“We put a lot of time in,” Toole said. “We have a lot of young players, young talent, so it was really about preparing them, and I think the vets stepped up to help them out.”
The Cavanaugh offense made plays, with junior quarterback Samantha Flores consistently finding receivers freshman Aly Anton and junior Olivia Dietzel. The Chaos (0-1-0) struggled in the red zone, however, where Flores threw two interceptions, including the decisive pick by Harmon.
According to senior captain and linebacker Meaghan Ayers, Cavanaugh needs to work on its communication and chemistry.
“I think it’s really just learning to play together, getting used to each other,” she said. “We have a little bit of a young team, so we’ll get there, I think, and we have a lot of strengths we’ll build upon as the season goes on.”
Both teams play again Tuesday night, when the Chaos face Badin, and the Weasels set their sights on a second victory against rival Pasquerilla East.
Contact Mary Green at mgreen8@nd.edu

Pangborn 28, Walsh 0
Pangborn made a statement in its opening game against Walsh on Sunday, beating the Wild Women 28-0.  
Pangborn’s offense, starring junior quarterback Caitlin Gargan, led the team to victory. The Phoxes (1-0-0) scored off of a Gargan run on their first play of the game and never let up.
“We knew what we wanted to do and we came out and executed it,” senior Pangborn co-captain Mary Kate Veselik said.
Gargan said the extra-point conversions really helped to clinch the win for the Phoxes.  
“A lot of times we don’t convert after the touchdown and it really comes to bite us,” Gargan said. “But today we converted on all of those and it was helpful.”
Veselik said the Phoxes’ defense was also crucial to the team’s victory, recording a shutout in the game.
As the game progressed, Walsh (0-1-0) began to find its stride, and the team came out stronger in the second half. The defense allowed only one touchdown and the offense set up a few scoring opportunities for the Wild Women.
However, the efforts were not enough to make up for the large deficit sustained in the first half.
“I think our starting quarterback did well and our defense played great today, but we need to work on our formations and get our routes down before our next game,” Walsh junior co-captain Maggie Fisher said.
Both teams faced quick, one-day turnarounds, as Pangborn took on Welsh Fam last night while Walsh played Ryan at the same time.
Contact Alexandra Lane at alane2@nd.edu

Howard 13, Welsh Family 6
Howard started off its flag football season on a good note Sunday, defeating Welsh Family 13-6.
Welsh Family (0-1-0) had a quick start, forcing the Ducks (1-0-0) to turn the ball over on downs at the 1-yard line in their first possession. On the first play of the Whirlwinds’ ensuing possession, sophomore running back Brie Custis scored a long touchdown to put Welsh Family up 6-0.
In the second half, Howard senior quarterback Clare Robinson completed a pass to junior receiver Claire Kozlowski for a touchdown, followed by a Robinson rush for the extra point.
The Ducks then added to their lead with a second Robinson touchdown run near the end of the game following two interceptions by Howard defenders.
Robinson said she attributed the win to team energy and chemistry.
“We’ve shaped up pretty well,” she said. “Every single person on the team played. It was great just to see that there was no one position that belonged to one person. We made the offense and defense work with everyone in every position.”
Despite the loss, Welsh Family senior captain Steph Lobaccaro said she is optimistic about the rest of the season.
“Honestly, I think we really did very well,” she said. “We had a couple of tough breaks on offense, not connecting with some of the passes. Hopefully for next game, we’ll actually get those connections and it’ll be really good.”
Welsh Family had a quick turnaround, playing Pangborn on Monday, while Howard next plays Walsh on Sunday.
Contact Renee Griffin at rgriffi6@nd.edu

Lyons 32, Badin 6
In an intense, season-opening battle, Lyons defeated Badin, 32-7, on Sunday at the LaBar Practice Complex.
The Lions (1-0-0) set the tone from the start when freshman receiver Taylor Sears scored on a 45-yard run. In total, Lyons scored 19 unanswered points in the first half. Lions senior captain Christina Bramanti said the fast start provided a momentum boost.
“We scored right away and everyone just got so excited,” Bramanti said. “The fact that we started off the game very strong was huge because we had that momentum going from the beginning and we were never in a position where we had to catch up.”
Down by 19, the Bullfrogs (0-1-0) attempted to break Lyons’ momentum with a touchdown before halftime. But the Lions answered quickly in the second half, scoring 13 more points to put away Badin.
Sears proved to be a crucial player for the Lions with three interceptions and 18 total points to her name.
“Offensively [Sears] had some great receptions and defensively she had a handful interceptions,” Bramanti said. “She went after the ball, never shying away, and took care of business.”
While the Bullfrogs had a hard time keeping up with Sears and the rest of the Lions, Badin sophomore quarterback Kristina Techar also said the loss was a result of insufficient practice time.
“The Lions had some really talented girls. We also hadn’t really practiced and a lot of the girls that were on offense hadn’t really run any of the plays before,” Techar said.
Lyons hopes to continue its success Sunday against Pasquerilla West, while Badin attempts to recover against Cavanaugh on Tuesday at Riehle Fields at 7 p.m.
Contact Megan Winkel at mwinkel@nd.edu

Pasquerilla East 19, Farley 6
After a evenly-matched first half, Pasquerilla East was able to pull away and secure a 19-6 victory over Farley on Sunday at the LaBar Practice Complex.    
The first half was a battle between the defenses, with both sides holding each other in the red zone on multiple occasions. The Pyros (1-0-0) and the Finest (0-1-0) exchanged drives down the field, only to be stopped by the other.
After a scoreless first half left, Pasquerilla East was able to blow open the second half with two big runs from senior running back Kiah Schaefbauer and an interception returned for a touchdown by junior safety Elizabeth Zolper.
“In the second half, we got into our rhythm and things started grooving,” Pyros senior captain Caroline Kuse said.  “Although the score was tied, I was overall confident in our players, our strategy and that the big plays would come with time.”  
Schaefbauer was able to find holes in the defense leading to two touchdown runs of over 30 yards.  
Farley did intercept a pass, but the Finest were unable to capitalize. Zolper, meanwhile, was able to convert her interception off Farley sophomore quarterback Kaitlin Smith’s pass into a touchdown, giving the Pyros a swing in momentum.
Kuse was confident her team’s athleticism would provide an advantage.
“We’ve got a couple of girls who can run like antelope,” Kuse said.
Farley mounted a late rally, but the three big plays  –  Schaefbauer’s touchdown runs and Zolper’s pick six – were all it took to lead Pasquerilla East to victory. The Finest managed to score a touchdown in the closing moments, but the Pyros held on for the 19-6 win.
Pasquerilla East will look to collect its second victory Tuesday at 7 p.m. against Pasquerilla West at Riehle Fields, while Farley squares off with Badin on Sunday.
Contact Eric Richelsen at erichels@nd.edu

Ryan 40, McGlinn 0
In a rivalry game, Ryan overpowered reigning champion McGlinn from the opening kickoff and defeated the Shamrocks, 40-0, on Sunday at the LaBar Practice Complex.
The Wildcats (1-0-0) were firing on all cylinders from the start as they intercepted the ball on McGlinn’s first play from scrimmage. Ryan freshman defensive lineman Shawn Hall returned the interception –  the first of five for the Wildcat defense  –  for a touchdown.
While McGlinn’s offense struggled to put together any sort of drive due to the interceptions, Ryan’s offense rolled behind freshman quarterback Kathleen Conaty, who said she impressed even herself in her first game by running for one and passing for another three touchdowns.
“Although I had a few jitters at the beginning of the game, once I had a few plays under my belt I was fine and I am really pleased that we came away with the win,” Conaty said.
Wildcats senior captain and offensive lineman Andrea Carlson said she was also very pleased with her team’s performance.
“This was a huge game for us today as we lost to McGlinn last year and they went on to win the championship,” Carlson said. “So we are feeling very positive about our prospects for the rest of the season.”
Despite the loss, McGlinn senior co-captain and cornerback Kaitlyn Keelin said she was confident the Shamrocks (0-1-0) could bounce back next game,
“We definitely have some stuff to practice on, but we have a really talented group of girls who can play a wide variety of positions, so I’m not concerned,” Keelin said. “The transition into the season will just take time.”
Ryan hopes to build on its excellent start Monday against Walsh, while McGlinn will try to return to its championship level of play Sunday against Welsh Family.
Contact Cornelius McGrath at cmcgrath2@nd.edu