NORTH ANDOVER – The Raiders had their hands full for much of the North Section Div. 2 final against Ipswich, on Saturday, but Watertown pulled away for the 3-1 win at North Andover High School.
The win gave the Raiders their ninth straight North Section title, and Watertown seeks its eighth straight State Championship.
The first half of a rough and tumble game with the team from the Cape Ann League ended 0-0. Watertown co-captain and senior Kourtney Kennedy changed that early in the second half, banging home a goal 2 minutes into the second stanza.
“We always want to hit first, that’s what we say,” Kennedy said. “I feel like whoever scores first sets the tone, and I felt like we were dominating most of that game. We had possession and we had a couple opportunities up front but didn’t break through.”
Then junior Sydney Poulin scored three minutes later to double the lead. Senior Gabby Venezia provided the assist.
“Syndey Poulin coming out of no where was huge,” said Watertown Coach Eileen Donahue. “But it was a huge team effort.”
Falling behind did not dampen the Tigers’s spirit, and Ipswich threatened the Watertown goal a few times, before senior Julia Glavin scored to make the score 2-1 with 20 minutes left in the game.
Despite giving up the goal, Donahue said she thought Watertown played a good defensive game, including junior goalie Jonna Kennedy.
“We had a good defensive stance, and Jonna made some awesome, awesome saves,” Donahue said
Two minutes later, Ipswich’s physical play was penalized and senior Izzy Primack sat for a couple minutes after receiving a green card. Watertown freshman Ally Kennedy made the Tigers pay scoring just over a minute later on a pass from Venezia, providing the Raiders with a 3-1 lead.
Watertown heads to the EMass final on Tuesday, Nov. 15, against the South Champion (either Foxborough or Falmouth). The game will be at Reading High School, and the time has not been announced.