The Indian River field hockey team made history Nov. 13, as they propelled themselves into the DIAA Division II state finals with a 2-1 overtime win over Lake Forest at Sussex Academy. It’s the first time the Indians have made the tournament final, where they will play top-seeded Delmar (18-0) at 1:30 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 9, at Seahawks Stadium.
Victory came just 24 seconds into the extra period when senior Rylie Cordrey hit the back of the cage off a pass from junior teammate Kayler Townsend.
“I knew that she [Kayler] didn’t have a good angle, so I was telling her to drop it back. When she passed it back, nothing was going through my mind; I just took the shot,” said Cordrey. “The less I think, the better I play. When I hit the back of the cage, I just started crying. Being my last year, it’s crazy. The seniors have worked so hard since we were freshmen to get to where we are. It feels really great. This definitely will boost our confidence going into the game against Delmar. We lost to them before (4-1 on Oct. 12 at UD), but being on this turf is better for us than [UD’s] astroturf. I love my teammates so much. It’s so exciting. I could cry again.”
“A lot of us seniors are making decisions to further our career in hockey,” said senior Kaylee Hall. “I was a little afraid that today would be my last game. It means a lot to us. We’ve never had a record this good. Never have we gotten this far. It’s really exciting.”
Lake Forest junior Jessica Tyndall put the Spartans on the scoreboard first with a blast just 6:49 into the game. Indians senior Avery Congleton answered in the second half to set up the overtime.
“Unbelievable,” said Indian River head coach Jodi Stone. “Pinch me; is this for real? They made some adjustments after regulation and they knew it was do or die. They got the job done. It’s fantastic. Everything is just coming together after many years of hard work and dedication. They’ve made me very proud.”
Indian River outshot Lake Forest 19-4 and held a 15-2 advantage in penalty corners. Spartans goalkeeper August Lewis had 16 saves in the cage, while Allyson Clark made two stops for the Indians.
And as for the Indians facing the Wildcats, “We have a second chance for revenge,” said Hall.