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Malmquist-powered Warrior comeback falls short

Senior captain Mary Long (5) defends along the near sideline. Photos by Mike Flanagan.

By Mike Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor

Down a pair late in Wednesday night's game at Ashland, the Medfield High School varsity field hockey team needed a response.

With 5:21 to play, sophomore Mikayla Malmquist stepped up big. A swift deke and rush through the midfield by her older sister, junior Ashley Malmquist, led to a chance along the left wing. Ashley pulled up from about 15 yards out and unleashed a knee-high shot on cage. Parked in front, Mikayla extended her stick and delivered a perfect redirection through traffic and into the back of the net to get Medfield on the board and cut the deficit to 2-1.

"They work so well together," said senior captain Mary Long following the game. "Their communication was on point."

The game had begun with some significant adversity for Medfield. A late bus forced an abbreviated warm-up and about a 45-minute delayed start. Following a scoreless first quarter, Ashland's looser legs began to play a factor. With the Clockers beginning to gain momentum, Ashland's Chloe Roberts drew first blood by putting home a shot five-hole on Medfield goalie Bitsy Crowley on a breakaway with 7:37 left to play in the half.

Still 1-0 late in the third quarter, a foul at the Medfield net-mouth allotted Ashland a penalty stroke. Olivia Gleason took the stroke for the Clockers and fired home a shot by a diving Crowley, just inside the left post, to double the Ashland lead to 2-0 with 2:07 left in the third.

After the sisters-Malmquist drew Medfield to within one late in the fourth quarter, the Warriors capitalized off the momentum and began sustaining pressure in the Ashland end. With 1:11 to play, Medfield was awarded a penalty corner. Gabrielle Curl took the inbound feed from Ashley Malmquist, but the Warriors were unable to put a shot on cage. Ashland made the clear as time ran out and the Clockers escaped with the 2-1 victory.

For funny and incisive sports analysis as well as video highlights of games, follow Mike Flanagan on his personal Twitter and Instagram handles @flano0.

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