Barker trio heads N-O All-League field hockey team

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 14 November 2014 at 12:00 am

Contributed Photo – Champion Barker is represented on the first team of the Niagara-Orleans All-League field hockey squad by the trio of, from left, Gabby Clare, Caitlin Mason and Melissa Grosshans.

A trio of players from now nine time defending champion Barker heads the first team of the annual Niagara-Orleans All-League field hockey squad.

Barker, which claimed the title with a perfect 12-0 record, is represented by senior attackers Gabby Clare and Melissa Grosshans and junior goalie Caitlyn Mason.

Akron, which finished in the runner-up spot at 9-3, has placed sophomore sweeper Cierra Janis and freshman center defender Abigail Stone.

Third place Wilson (8-4) also has two first team honorees in forward Rachael Cobo and midfielder Courtney Wheeler, both juniors.

Completing the first team are Kenmore junior enter midfielder Emily King, Newfane senior attacker/defender Leah Good, Roy-Hart sophomore defender/midfielder Rielly Albee and Medina junior midfielder Stella Russo.

Grosshans and Stone are both repeat selections while Good and Albee were both second team honorees last year.

Clare, a five year varsity player, led Barker in scoring with season with 13 goals and 9 assists including 4 game winning goals.

“Her skill (stick work) has improved greatly over the past two seasons. Combine that with her speed and strength and she is a threat to make plays and score for the team at any time,” said Barker Coach Jeff Costello. “She is a key in both defensive and offensive corners for the Lady Raiders. She is a player that draws a lot of attention.”

Grosshans, who is also a five year varsity player, scored 12 goals this season including five game winners.

“She comes up big in big games,” said Costello. “She has a great feel for and understanding of the game. She plays low and can be very elusive. ”

A four year varsity player, Mason registered 8 shutouts in league play and didn’t allow a goal. Overall she had 11 shutouts on the season with a 0.20 goals against average.

“There is no doubt that she is the best athlete on the Lady Raiders roster and plays her best in the biggest of games,” said Costello.

A two year starter for Akron, Stone had 8 goals in league play this season.

“Abby is a freshman but plays like a five year varsity veteran,” said Coach Mary Borden. “Abby quite simply is a formidable force on both offense and defense. When you think of Abby, you think POWER. When Abby goes after a balll, she comes away with it the vast majority of the time. She is the epitome of ‘a gamer’.”

Contributed Photo – Akron’s first team honorees, at left, are Cierra Janis (17) and Abigail Stone (22). Wilson’s honorees, at right, are Courtney Wheeler (5) and Rachael Cobo (10).

Janis anchored the Akron defense which registered 8 shutouts and allowed only 9 goals in league play.

“Cierra was the rock wall of our defense,” said Borden. “Cierra has taken complete ownership of the sweeper position. She has an uncanny awareness of the proper positioning in critical situations. She has robbed many an attacker of a breakaway. She is fast at recovering to the net and protecting the net on corners.”

Cobo has scored 16 goals and added 4 assists over the past two seasons for Wilson.

“Rachel is an extremely aggressive player with solid stick skills,” said Coach Jaime Lepsch. “She has been instrumental in the Wilson Lakewomen’s rising success over the past two seasons.”

A four year varsity player, Wheeler has tallied 12 goals and 5 assists for Wilson during that period.

“Courtney is the key to the Wilson Lakewomen’s passing game,” said Lepsch. “She has a tremendous work ethic and is an outstanding team player. She has been instrumental in keeping the team motivated and goal oriented.”

King had 3 goals and 8 assists for Kenmore in league play this season.

“She was a dominant force on the field, and controlled the game for us in a season when we replaced 7 of 11 starters,” said Coach Leslie Simon.

Good, a four year varsity player, had 4 goals and 4 assists this season.

“Leah has been a great contributor to the team,” said Coach Kelly Jordan. “She is a great leader on and off the field.”

Contributed Photo – Rounding out the first team honorees are, from left, Medina’s Stella Russo, Newfane’s Leah Good, Kenmore’s Emily King and Roy-Hart’s Rielly Albee.

A three year varsity player, Albee keyed the midfield area for Roy-Hart from her defensive/sweep position.

“Rielly has been a solid force on the Roy-Hart team this season,” said Coach Colleen Albee. “Her game is consistent and powerful. She is aware of the field and has learned to help control the game and push her team to the offensive end. She plays with fire and passion in her game.”

Russo is a three year varsity player for Medina.

“She is a solid midfield player that controls the center of the field managing the offensive and defensive lines,” said Coach Amber Cleaveland. “She is a dynamic player with decent stick work and speed.”

Barker also leads the second team honorees with three selections including senior defender Alexandrea VeRost, junior attacker Erin Greenwald and junior midfielder Madison Greenwald.

Akron is represented by senior left wing Molly Jennings and junior center forward Sarah Schultz.

Wilson has placed the sophomore duo of midfielder Johanna Turney and defender Erin Boyle.

Rounding out the second team selections are Kenmore sophomore forward Britney Waite, Newfane junior attack/defender Katie Kneeland, Roy-Hart senior defender/midfielder Casidhe Heschke and Medina senior defender Anna Blount.

N-O All-League Field Hockey

First Team
Gabby Clare – Barker – Sr. – Attack
Melissa Grosshans – Barker – Sr. – Attack
Caitlyn Mason – Barker – Jr. – Goalkeeper
Abigail Stone – Akron – Fr. – Center Defender
Cierra Janis – Akron – So. – Sweeper
Rachael Cobo – Wilson – Jr. – Forward
Courtney Wheeler – Wilson – Jr. – Midfield
Emly King – Kenmore – Jr. – Center Midfield
Leah Good – Newfane – Sr – Attack/Defense
Rielly Albee – Roy-Hart – So. – Defense/Midfield
Stella Russo – Medina – Jr. – Midfield

Second Team
Erin Greenwald – Barker – Jr. – Attack
Madison Greenwald – Barker – Jr. – Midfield
Alexandrea VeRost – Barker – Sr. – Defense
Molly Jennings – Akron – Sr. – Left Wing
Sarah Schultz – Akron – Jr. – Center Forward
Johanna Turvey – Wilson – So. – Midfield
Erin Boyle – Wilson – So. – Defense
Britney Waite – Kenmore – So. – Forward
Katie Kneeland – Newfane – Jr. – Attack/Defense
Casidhe Heschke – Roy-Hart – Sr. – Defense/Midfield
Anna Blount – Medina – Sr. – Defense

Honorable Mention
Emma Duffy – Barker – Jr. – Midfield/Defense
Kelsie Engert – Barker – Jr. – Midfield/Defense
Kelsey Blackley – Barker – Sr. – Defense
Morgan Brown – Barker – Sr. – Defense
Renee Levy – Barker – Sr. – Attack/Defense
Erika Moeller – Barker – Jr. — Defender
Emma Botham – Kenmore – So. – Forward
Ally Kerr – Kenmore – Sr. – Forward
Kailyn Burke – Kenmore – Sr. – Left Midfield
Grace Simmons – Kenmore – Jr. – Defense
Chrissie Hickey – Kenmore – Sr. – Defense
Hallie Seaman – Medina – Sr. – Goalie
Loriann Blenker – Akron – Sr. – Right Midfield
Riley Guenther – Akron – Sr. – Center Midfield
Victoria Triaga – Akron – Sr. – Goalie
Ashton Witzleben – Akron – Sr. – Right Wing
Mia Ludwig – Newfane – So. – Goalie
Deanna Catalano – Roy-Hart – Sr. – Midfield
Madeline Mocarski – Wilson – Fr. – Forward
Taylor Cyphert – Wilson – Jr. – Defense
Olivia Mitchell – Wilson – Fr. – Midfield