“Having Kage and Sarah (Visnick, a sophomore) at outside fullback plus (senior captains) Kristen (O’Connor) and Dee (Diandra Crowley) on the inside, that gives everyone confidence,” said Simpson. “All week at practice we were specifically working on our defense, and I thought we did a really good job of eliminating how often North Andover was able to attack us.”
“Everyone is fitting into their positions, and that’s really what we need,” added Harty, who has 44 goals this fall. “It’s the perfect time for our time to realize that.”
Harty got the scoring started less than seven minutes in, burning down the right sideline and firing a shot that North Andover keeper Meg Collins stopped before Harty knocked in the rebound. A little over nine minutes later, though, Stephanie Stabile tied it for the Scarlet Knights when her shot from the far side of the field found net.
Thirty-three minutes into the first half, Cook and Harty combined to give Beverly the lead for good. Picking up a loose ball at the 50, Cook flew down the left sideline and cut inwards before hitting a streaking Harty with a perfect pass. The diving one-time shot beat Collins cleanly for a 2-1 lead.
“The play’s never done,” Cook said of gaining control of the loose ball that led to the goal. “I knew right when I got into the box that Caitlin was making a run and put it right on her foot, and she put it in the net.”
Panther junior Kyra Wolonsavich was stingy, stopping eight shots while making sure the visitors never got a chance to climb back into the game. Midfielders Meghan Berking, a junior, and sophomore Caitlyn Munzing (the latter Beverly’s only substitute) were also praised by Simpson for their fine play.
“These girls, they’re just so intense. They want it so bad, especially the four captains,” said Simpson. “They set great examples in practice, and that carries over into games.”