Porkers Fall to Somerset-Berkley in South Sectional Finals

Field Hockey Season Comes to End After a 3-1 Loss to Undefeated Raiders


Tim Hoffman

The Porkers erupt in cheers and share a group hug after beating Plymouth North 3-1.

After an undefeated regular season, a 3-0 win over Bridgewater-Raynham, a thrilling 3-2 win over Plymouth North and a 4-1 triumph over Notre Dame Academy, the Porkers’ season was ended by the unstoppable force known as Somerset-Berkeley with a 3-1 loss. Having a 16-0-2 record, the Porkers were seated number three in the MIAA Division 1 South bracket.

“We felt very good going into tournament especially after having an undefeated regular season,” senior captain Sydney Scales said. “We also knew we had a lot of pressure going into each game after having that successful of a regular season.”

The Porkers began their tournament run against number 19 seed, Bridgewater-Raynham, standing their ground as a top seed and beating them 3-0.

In the next round, Walpole faced off against Plymouth North, a very talented number six seed team, in a nail-biting game. At one point, the Porkers found themselves down a point, but quickly rallied to tie and ultimately win with help from sophomore Jess Tosone for the game-winning goal.

“I was very excited after getting that goal and it felt awesome because it ensured that we wouldn’t need to go into overtime,” Tosone said.

Molly Weiand makes a pass to a teammate (Photo/ Tim Hoffman).

Next up: Notre Dame Academy. Walpole dominated the game, winning 4-1. The score differential was only three, but the Porkers maintained possession for the vast majority of the game, leading them on to the South Sectional Finals.

“NDA was great competition and pushed us to work our hardest,” senior goalie GiGi Anello said. “After beating NDA, we were determined to keep pushing ourselves and advance further into the tournament.”

On Nov. 9, the Porkers stepped on Taunton High School turf to face off against Somerset-Berkley for the second year in a row. As soon as the game began, Walpole was out for revenge, wanting to redeem themselves after losing to the same team, in the same round, one year prior. Both teams battled hard, but Walpole found it difficult to keep possession and make offensive drives. With 11:44 left in the first half, senior Lucas Crook scored the first goal of the game, giving the Raiders an early lead. Nine minutes later, Crook stole the ball at the top of the circle and finished for a 2-0 lead, which held for the rest of the half. Although they were down two goals, the Porkers did not give up hope at half time.

Eager to get points on the board, Walpole started out strong in the second half. Once again, Crook proved his value to the Somerset-Berkley squad by scoring his third goal, capping off a hat trick and giving the Porkers a steep hill to climb. Even at a three point deficit, the Porkers refused to go down without a fight. With 6:49 left in the game, sophomore Caroline Whelan swept in a goal at the left post as the Rebel crowd erupted in cheers.

“After scoring, everyone, including myself, was excited because it showed that we weren’t going to give up that easily,” Whelan said. “I think it was a much needed goal that gave us some confidence back and made Somerset feel the pressure a little bit.”

Walpole’s Sophia Pacella battles to keep possession against a Somerset-Berkley player (Photo/ Sophia Pacella).

Unfortunately for Walpole, that single goal was not enough to produce the outcome they had wished for, and Somerset-Berkley was crowned South Sectional Champion once again.

“Obviously we were disappointed after losing, especially knowing that that game was our last game together; however, we know we left it all on the field and that we accomplished so much this season so we have a lot to be proud of,” Scales said.

While some athletes may move on and look forward to their next season, the seniors will always appreciate the years they spent as a Porker.

“I will forever cherish the time I spent as a Porker and the memories I made with my teammates,” Anello said. “It is unfortunate that we didn’t make it all the way, but I am beyond proud of the way we fought and I will never forget what it’s like to be apart of such an incredible group of girls.”