Led by the Vendel sisters, Betsy and Lisa, who each had five goals and three assists, the Newtown High girls lacrosse team beat Brookfield 18-9 in the first round of the Division I state tournament Saturday, its third victory over Brookfield this season.
"We got beat by Barlow two years ago in the first round of states and we beat them twice in the season," said Newtown coach Maura Fletcher. "We know what that's like to go in two wins confident and lose in the first round of states, so we didn't want that to happen again today."
Another tally was added to Newtown's recent triumphs over Brookfield. Newtown has beaten Brookfield in the SWC championship game four years in a row and, overall, has not lost to the Bobcats in over four years.
"They're definitely a great team," said Brookfield head coach Jamie Williams. "They made some key adjustments for our defense, which had gotten us this far."
The Nighthawks controlled the game from the outset, jumping out to a 6-0 lead 10 minutes into the game. They led 10-4 at halftime after Kaitlyn Brophy delivered a momentous goal with 0.5 seconds remaining in the first half.
"We wanted to try to go out with momentum going into the half," Williams said. "That was tough having that goal go in."
Brookfield fought back, however, determined to put up a fight against its rival. Even after Newtown's goal to end the first half, Brookfield struck first in the second half as Emily Leonard came around the net and scored.
Brookfield scored four of the first six goals in the second half, closing the deficit to four at 12-8 with over 15 minutes remaining.
"At halftime we were up by six," said Fletcher, "and I told the girls that was not a comfortable enough lead for me. You're usually pretty comfortable with a six-goal differential, but not against Brookfield when they're so fast and athletic."
But Newtown pulled away from there, scoring the next six goals to take an 18-8 lead with one minute remaining.
Newtown moves on to a Division I quarterfinal rematch with Glastonbury, a 20-6 winner over Hamden on Saturday. On May 11, the Nighthawks lost at home in overtime 16-15 to Glastonbury.
But Lisa Vendel, an honorable mention All-American, thinks her team is ready for round two on Monday.
"If we play as well as we did today," Vendel said, "it'll be another victory."
Brookfield (15-6) 4 5 -- 9
Newtown (18-2) 10 9 --18
GOALS: Brookfield: Emily Leonard 3, Nicole Perrone 3, Jackie Brown, Alexa Foldy, Kathryn Marron. Newtown: Betsy Vendel 5, Lisa Vendel 5, Meghan Bridges 4, Kaitlyn Brophy 2, Katie Canavan, Jackie Isabella.
ASSISTS: Brookfield: Kathryn Marron 2, Alexa Foldy, Beth Magin. Newtown: Betsy Vendel 3, Lisa Vendel 3, Meghan Bridges 2, Kaitlyn Brophy 2, Meaghan Carney, Jackie Isabella.
SAVES: Karynne Cabral (B) 16, Marnie Thompson (N) 6.
Contact Brett LoGiurato at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (203) 731-3379.