In doing so, the Bobcats’ leading scorer noticed the Osbourn Park defense wasn’t collapsing on action near the crease.
The Yellow Jackets were giving the Bobcats ample room to maneuver in one-on-one situations, and Battlefield took what was given.
Kugler used that area to score five of her game-high six goals en route to an 11-5 win at Osbourn Park on Thursday.
It marked a fourth straight region title for the Bobcats.
Whether it was running straight toward the crease or using a spin move to create space, Kugler pulled out her entire arsenal.
The Bobcats will host the loser of Friday’s Westfield-Oakton 6A North final in a state semifinal Tuesday.
“I thought we had to turn the switch on and press them because they were good when we were settling,” Kugler said. “In one versus one situations, they weren’t stopping us, so we had to spread it out and move it on.”
Kugler scored five goals in the first half to help give Battlefield a 6-2 lead. Freshman Brynn Sunderland added three goals for the Bobcats (13-4), who grabbed full control of the game after giving up the opening goal after eight minutes.
Meanwhile, junior goalie Arion Pierre stopped nine shots, including several that required fast stickwork in breakaway situations.
“I watched the ball, and I was patient,” Pierre said. “I wasn’t impulsive like I am at times. I just stepped to the ball and watched it carefully.”
Senior Corinne Wessels did her best to bring the Yellow Jackets (13-5) back from the first-half deficit. She scored three goals in two minutes to trim the lead to 8-5 with 14 minutes 37 seconds left. But after a timeout, Battlefield scored the next three goals to clinch the title.
With the win, the Bobcats avenged a 14-9 loss to Osbourn Park on May 12. That defeat and back-to-back losses to Patriot resulted a three-game skid late in the season.
“We had a little lull at the end with those losses. We were used to kind of dominating the area,” Battlefield Coach Rice Lilley said. “We had an epiphany. For us to come back here and put this together is gratifying.”
In the Virginia 5A North region final, Woodgrove escaped with a 14-11 victory over Loudoun Valley. Playing at home, the Wolverines jumped to an 11-4 lead at halftime.
Sophomore Virginia commit Nora Bowen finished with five goals and one assist, and Courtney Olivier also had five goals.
“In the first half, my girls came out ready to play and moved the ball well,” Woodgrove Coach Robert Fuller said. “I don’t think Loudoun Valley was ready for that. At the half, I told them that the girls wouldn’t give up. They’re a great team.”
Woodgrove will host 5A South region runner-up Salem in the state semifinals. Loudoun Valley will travel to Western Albemarle, which beat Salem, 10-9.