For senior Alex Watson, the message particularly hit home. Two summers ago, a four-wheeler accident at the home of a family friend in Davidsonville put her career in jeopardy as she dealt with serious injuries to her head, pelvis, ribs, hip and finger.
Following a painstaking six-month recovery that forced her to miss a key lacrosse recruiting period and field hockey season, Watson returned to the field with a renewed perspective.
“It really made me appreciate life,” Watson said of the accident. “It could have gone a lot worse than it did go. . . . I know that it could end really easily, so it makes me always want to work my hardest.”
After McNemar reinforced that idea, Watson proceeded to seize the spotlight in sixth-ranked South River’s 16-13 win over No. 9 Severna Park. The LaSalle-bound attacker tallied a game-high five goals and an assist as the Seahawks dropped the Falcons to stay unbeaten and atop the Anne Arundel County standings.
Watson, one of six seniors who played on the 2010 state title winning team, came out firing with goals on her team’s first two possessions to stake South River (11-2, 10-0) to an early lead. The first came after a leaping catch in front of the net to snare a pass from junior Kacie Longo, who assisted on three of Watson’s scores.
Severna Park (9-3, 8-2) managed to turn it into a back-and-forth contest before the Seahawks surged into the half with three straight goals in a 1 minute 50 second span. Senior Jacquelyn Spalding recorded back-to-back tallies and then made a pass from behind the net to Watson to put the Seahawks up 8-5.
“When you get [the seniors] fired up, they just come out and they just mesh,” McNemar said. “They’re a great group of girls that work really hard.”
The momentum carried over with South River controlling possession for most of the second half, including a nearly nine-minute possession that finished with a goal by Florida-bound senior Taylor Bresnahan and was followed seven seconds later by a score from Longo, an All-Met soccer player.
The Seahawks led by seven goals when senior Bella Pyne closed their scoring with 5:21 remaining, and they were able to hold on and run out the final 2:01 after Severna Park’s late run of four quick unanswered goals. All-Met Morgan Torggler paced the Falcons with four goals.
“As a senior, I know that this is my last year playing with these girls,” said Watson, who feels no ill effects of her accident besides occasional hip pain. “Just knowing how much we all love the sport, it’s been an amazing experience and we want to finish strong.”
South River boys take down Severna Park
The Seahawks (11-2, 10-0 Anne Arundel) led almost the whole way after Senft scored 65 seconds in off a feed from sophomore Gunnar Schimolar, but the defending Maryland 4A/3A champs took a while to get rolling on offense.
On a slick afternoon, South River pulled away in the middle quarters, wearing Severna Park (9-4, 8-2) down with an attack built around senior Ben Chisolm, an All-Met who added three goals and an assist. The Seahawks used a run of three straight goals to take an 8-2 lead on a score by junior Mike Ward with 1:08 left in the third period.
“With the wet sticks today, it just takes a little bit to get used to how to throw and everything,” said Chisolm, who will play at Maryland. “As soon as we started to learn how to pass with the weather out here, everything just started clicking.”
Junior Tyler Haskell scored twice for Severna Park.