2021.11.04 Field Hockey: VHSL Region 5D Final

Ashburn, VA (November 4, 2021) - The Stafford Indians had to travel to get to the Region 5D final to meet a team they had never played. But they weren't going to be intimidated by the Independence Tigers' unblemished regular season record. After all, the Indians hadn't lost either, and they had just beaten the Tigers' arch-rival, Riverside, to make it to the regional final. 

Chas Sumser Photography was there to capture the action and emotion and posted a gallery of images from the game.

As soon as the game started, the Indians pushed the ball into the Independence end. The Tigers were clearly on their heels throughout the first quarter, but their vaunted defense held tight to keep the score tied at 0-0 at the first break.

In the second quarter, the Tigers managed to establish more of an attack and created a few good chances. Indian goalie Caitlyn Kahn was absolutely brilliant in goal with perfectly timed kick saves thwarting any threat Independence could establish. Meanwhile, Stafford continued to press all over the field and maintained the advantage in possession.

With 2:30 to go in the half, Indian Olivia Stocks uncorked a wicked backhand shot that was initially blocked by Tiger keeper Quin Demcsak, who was also outstanding. But the rebound fell a few feet in front of the goal and was swept in by Ava Brewer for a 1-0 Stafford lead at halftime.

That goal was all the Indians would get and was all they would need. Independence poured on a fierce offensive second half attack, but could not break through the Stafford defense.

In the waning seconds of the fourth quarter Indy pushed just about everyone forward to take advantage of a penalty corner. It would be the last best chance the Tigers had, but the Stafford championship celebration began when the defense stopped the shot and cleared the arc.

Final Score: Stafford 1 - Independence 0

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