LACROSSE: Wildcats beat Caledonia

Matthew Day •
Mattawan’s Alexa Gravitter (23) finds herself open in front of the goal facing the Caledonia goalie during this week’s matchup on the Wildcats’ lacrosse field   Hot Shotz Photography/Matthew Day

   The Mattawan girls lacrosse team hosted Caledonia for what turned into an easy win for the Wildcats.
   The home team started the match off relatively slow, scoring only three goals in the first half to tie their visitors from Caledonia. The Lady Cats did not win many draws; but their defense and goalie Lauren Brush stymied Caledonia’s offense and kept the ’Cats in the game. 
   The Lady Cats, who have been improving all season, building their team and talents, returned to the field after the half with a new game plan - put more pressure on the Caledonia goalie and defense. They kept a Wildcat in the goalie’s face and did not allow her an easy pass away from the goal. The effort paid off in the Lady Cats keeping the ball on the Caledonia side of the field for most of the second half. 
   The Lady Cats shut down their visitors’ offense and  allowed just one goal in the second half.  In the meantime, the Mattawan offense scored nine goals in the second half to bring the match to a 12-4 winning conclusion.
   The Wildcats’ big stick of the game belonged to Grace Hazelhoff, who put four goals into the net; Monique Vale followed with three.  Hazelhoff seemed driven to take as many shots as she could.  By the end of the game she had taken a total of nine shots on goal followed by Grace Brady with five and Lindsey Green and Vale each with four.
   Brush took 13 shots on goal and allowed only four to slip by.  In a sport where a 50% save ratio is considered good, Brush walked away with a better than 66% save ratio.
   Coach Matt Stevens said  Caledonia is a program Mattawan had been trying to catch up to. They play at the next level and the Lady Wildcats were working hard to get to that level of competition. Last year Mattawan lost an early season match-up to Caledonia, then faced off against them in Regionals and won - a big step for the Mattawan Lacrosse program. 

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