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Interhall Insider: Pangborn, PW ready for title game rematch

Mike Burdell | Friday, November 17, 2006

Different year, same teams.

This year’s Women’s Interhall championship features a rematch of last year’s title game in a showdown between Pangborn and Pasquerilla West.

Looking for a repeat from last year’s 13-0 win in the championship, the Purple Weasels understand the energy surrounding the game and believe they will be able to handle the pressure.

“We won [the championship] last year so we know what it’s like playing in the stadium,” Purple Weasels captain Mo Spring said.

Although the Purple Weasels have aspirations of repeating their title, they aren’t the only team going into Sunday’s matchup with confidence and excitement Pangborn still has a bad taste in its mouth after last year’s championship upset.

“We’ve been working for this all year. We have been thirsty to get back to the stadium,” Phox coach Tom Holder said.

But the Purple Weasels also have a loss to avenge this season, after losing to the Phoxes 13-12 on Sept. 21. But despite falling in the teams’ only matchup this season, the Purple Weasels still feel they have improved a lot since then.

“We’ve grown as a team over the season. We played [Pangborn] as our third game and we’ve certainly improved since then so I think it will be a whole new game in the stadium,” Spring said. “We’re definitely big rivals since we met last year in the stadium, but we’ll show that on the field.”

Pangborn is determined to finish this year with a win, capping its undefeated season with a title.

“Ever since we lost [the championship game to Pasquerilla West] last year, all of us, especially the seniors, agreed that we wanted it to be our last loss ever. The girls just really want to win the championship,” Holder said.

The Purple Weasels feel that the most important thing for them to win is to focus on their own play. A team led by its senior leadership, Pasquerilla West has confidence in its ability to execute its plays well enough to retain the championship. The Puple Weasels believe that no matter how good Pangborn plays Sunday, they will still be able to win if they play their best football.

“Pangborn is a really good opponent. They’re a pretty strong team. I think it’s more how we play our game than trying to expose their weaknesses. We have to play how we’ve been playing,” Spring said.

But on the other sideline, Pangborn feels it can rely on the mistakes it feels Pasquerilla West will make. If the Phoxes are able to effectively exploit the Purple Weasels’ weaknesses, they think that will be enough to win.

“Both teams really know each other well, so the team that can avoid turnovers and not give up the big plays should win,” Holder said. “It should come down to coaching, execution and taking care of the ball,”

Both teams have used similar styles of play in their returns to the stadium. The Purple Weasels and the Phoxes throughout the season have both relied on the play of their defenses and their quarterbacks – Cara Davies for Pasquerilla West and Katie Mooney for Pangborn.

Because of the similarities and history between the two squads, Holder expects an exciting game Sunday.

“The fact that we fell short last year doesn’t play a factor.” Holder said. “The teams are very evenly matched, so it should be a good game.”

Kickoff is noon Sunday at Notre Dame Stadium.