BOONTON _ A minimum of inspiration was needed for Morristown to capture its first Morris County Field Hockey Tournament title since 1991.
Colonials junior back Julia Woodworth said much of the motivation needed to defeat top-seeded West Morris 1-0 in the final on Tuesday, Oct. 18 was derived from their shutout victory over five-time defending champion Madison three days before.
"We had a big fire under us to win after the Madison game," said the elated Woodworth following the championship game at Boonton High School. "This is all really exciting. It was all so crazy. After the first goal, I was screaming. I was crying. It's my first time being in something this big. I'm so happy."
Junior left wing Callie Sundin, who scored the first goal versus the Dodgers in the semifinals, was responsible for the game's lone goal versus the Wolfpack. Sundin converted off a corner for second-seeded Morristown (15-1) with 12:39 left in the opening half. For the next 42-plus minutes, the Colonials, whose lone setback this season was to West Morris, stood tall on defense fending off their determined opponent.
"Our defense was outstanding," Morristown coach Diane DeSalvo said. "It's been like that all season. Gianna Mitchell did a great job in the goalcage. We were able to keep the ball out. We had our chances and they had theirs. Our girls did an excellent job tonight."
The corner defense unit comprised of Mitchell (7 saves), Charlotte Duff, Kei Murphy, Devon Colquhoun and Alyssa Richtarek didn't flinch while thwarting West Morris' 18 attempts. Woodworth got her stick on the ball often in the circle, intercepting passes and stopping shots. Savannah Familo, too, played a large role in repelling the Wolfpack for Morristown, appearing in its first final since 2007.
"We had our chances on the offensive end. We just couldn't finish," West Morris coach Courtney Barnett said. "We have to give credit to their goalie and defense who kept us out of there. Our kids played hard the entire game. I'm so proud of how much our defense stepped up and how much heart we played with. We never quit."
Offensive MVP Olivia Graham of Morristown was a force to contend with, breaking away and racing deep into West Morris territory several times. Graham's speed and desire remained at a high level until the very end. Standouts on "D" for the Wolfpack (15-2) were many, including Morgan Schade, Claire Caldarola, Jess Gutowski and goalie Emily Egan (12 saves). Junior midfielder Allison Egan garnered defensive MVP honors.
"West Morris played a fantastic game," Woodworth said. "They put a lot of pressure on us. We knew they would. We had to fight for it."
The game's only goal went off several sticks before being deflected in by Sundin on the right post. Sundin inserted the ball, sending it to Colquhoun. Colquhoun passed to Sundin, who threaded it through a defender's legs.
"There are no words," Sundin said. "We made history here tonight. It was a true team effort. We really wanted it. We played with our hearts. I couldn't be prouder."
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