St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes senior Kennon Moon stood still on the field Saturday at Bullis School when the final horn sounded to end the Independent School League AA championship. The Saints had just beaten rival Georgetown Visitation, 10-7, and as rain started to fall, Moon took in the moment.
Since the ISL began keeping records 22 years ago, the Saints (22-2) had lost in the league tournament just once — last season to Holton-Arms. The Cubs (19-5) then beat the Saints during the regular season, providing even more fuel entering the final.
“Coming into not even just this game but this season, our mentality was that it wasn’t going to happen again,” Moon said. “We’re proving that we’re still a force to be reckoned with.”
Moon’s faceoff superiority was crucial. She and sophomore Rita Peterson communicated verbally and with subtle nods before faceoffs to control possessions. The Saints won 14 of 19 draw controls; Peterson had seven.
“We’ve been really working on Kennon and Rita getting draw controls,” Coach Kathy Jenkins said. “Rita and Kennon have such a good connection that it’s what’s kept us in every game.”
Their successful communication allowed the Saints to score twice in the opening 49 seconds and five unanswered goals while limiting Visitation’s offense. The Cubs’ first shot attempt came in the 10th minute, and they didn’t get on the scoreboard until sophomore Sally Zinsner scored with 4:32 left in the first half.
In their regular season matchup, St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes also got off to a fast start but was outscored 7-3 in the second half. The game flow was heading in a similar direction when the Cubs twice cut the Saints’ lead to two.
But senior Alex Burtnett’s goal with under a minute remaining sealed the win. Sophomore Cate Bradley had a team-high four goals for the Saints.
“I was getting a little worried there,” senior Caroline Burnett said. “Before the first Visi game, we haven’t really had a close game yet. After that, we had a few close games and we learned how to adapt and how to win when the game’s close.”
Sophomore Molly Finlay scored five goals in the ISL A tournament final to propel Flint Hill to a 13-8 win over Sidwell Friends.
The Huskies (15-2) kept the Quakers (15-7) scoreless for nearly 24 minutes in the second half while scoring seven goals.
“We talked about our level of communication in the second half — being faster to slide and help and just keeping our composure,” Flint Hill Coach Justin Fitzgerald said. “We definitely raised the level of our game in the second half.”
Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes lost to Visitation last season in the Independent School League AA tournament. That loss was to Holton-Arms.