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Sophia Filipowski scores to lift Ursuline to first field hockey victory of season: Photo gallery

Several Raiders are all smiles after they took a 1-0 lead against Middletown. The lead would hold up. Dialog photo/Mike Lang

WILMINGTON — The looks on the faces of the Ursuline field hockey team said it all.

The Raiders entered their game Sept. 30 against Middletown having scored just two goals in their first five games. So when Sophia Filipowski tapped in a loose ball with 53.5 seconds remaining in the second quarter, she and her teammates let loose with a big celebration. They then backed up the goal by staying aggressive on offense and clamping down on defense to hold on for a 1-0 win at Serviam Field. It was their first victory of the season.

This was the Raiders’ game from the start. The Cavaliers earned an early penalty corner, but virtually all of the offense in the first half came from Ursuline after that. The Raiders pressured Middletown relentlessly, causing numerous turnovers, but despite many chances, they were unable to generate many shots on Cavs goalkeeper Charlotte Gerber. Twice in the second quarter, they had passes along the baseline, but they could not get the tally.

That changed in the final minute of the half. Off a penalty corner, the Raiders once agin sent the ball toward Gerber. Maddie Cherry put the ball toward the net, where Filipowski joined a few other players trying to get a piece of the ball. She rolled the ball over the end line just before a Cavs defender got her stick down.

They had to hold on to that lead for the entire second half, and neither team generated much in the way of offense after the break. Middletown had a corner in the third quarter, and another chance in the final quarter, but offense was at a premium in the second half.

Each team had five penalty corners. Goalkeeper Elizabeth Ciarlo had four saves for the Raiders. Ursuline (1-5) plays at St. Andrew’s on Tuesday at 3:45 p.m.

Gerber stopped five Raiders shots. Middletown (4-3) is home on Monday against Red Lion at 3:45 p.m.

All photos by Mike Lang.