Episcopal’s Bacskai makes ‘Team Evie’ proud with pair of goals

NEWTOWN SQUARE >> As the Episcopal Academy field hockey players stood in silence just before their Inter-Ac League game with The Academy of Notre Dame Tuesday, senior Maddie Bacskai thought of Evie O’Brian, who played field hockey and lacrosse and competed in track and field.

“She was an amazing teammate,” Bacskai said of O’Brian, a member of EA’s Class of 2014 who died at the age of 18 while attending the summer session at Penn State University not long after her high school graduation.

“She didn’t play much for the hockey team, but she was always cheering us on and dancing around the locker room. I still think of her as one of my role models. It was nice that her parents came here for the game today.”

The Episcopal players, wearing ribbons in their hair with the words “Team Evie,” made the O’Brians proud with their

DAILY TIMES - TOM KELLY IV Episcopal's Margaux Paolino runs with the ball during the Academy of Notre Dame at Episcopal Academy field hockey, Tuesday afternoon.
Episcopal’s Margaux Paolino runs with the ball during the Academy of Notre Dame at Episcopal Academy field hockey, Tuesday afternoon.

2-0 victory over Notre Dame. EA remained undefeated (13-0 overall, 2-0 in league play) while the Irish dropped to 5-2 and 1-1.

Bacskai, a center back who helped goalies Bridget Boyle and Caroline Kelly earn a shutout, stepped up to the scoring circle on penalty corners in each half and scored both goals for the home team.

“I do get the chance to score on corners,” said Bacskai, who converted passes from Margaux Paolino and Corinne Zanoilli for her two scores.

Bacskai will join the Princeton University field hockey team next fall, along with Notre Dame’s Mary Kate Neff. Before that, she has the rest of her senior hockey season as well as golf season in the spring of 2016 to represent Episcopal Academy. She began playing golf after suffering a bad knee injury that cost her her sophomore lacrosse season in 2014.

She’ll also represent the United States as a member of its Under-21 hockey team at the Junior Pan-Am Games in Trinidad & Tobago in the spring.

“I did a lot of national team stuff during the summer,” said the Berwyn resident, who came to EA after learning the game of field hockey at Tredyffrin-Eastown Middle School. “We played in the national club championships, and I went to the U-21 national camp.”

Episcopal had seven penalty corners to Notre Dame’s one in the first half Tuesday, and grabbed the lead on Bacskai’s first goal, which came at 16:51.

Notre Dame got 10 of its 14 second-half corners in the first eight minutes, but Kelly turned away five shots. Bacskai added her second goal with 10 minutes to play.

“It was another good EA/Notre Dame game,” winning coach Gina Buggy said. “Two very good teams played some great field hockey.”

Elsewhere in the Inter-Ac:

Agnes Irwin 6, Germantown Academy 3 >> Julianna Tornetta and Jax van der Veen each notched a hat trick while combining for three assists, sending the Owls (7-2) to the league-opening win.

In the Central League:

Upper Darby 2, Marple Newtown 1 >> After assisting on Grace Muldoon’s first-half goal, Erin Redden still had a little work to do as she deposited the game-winner in overtime for the Royals. Gia DeAngelis was the lone Tiger to get the ball past winning netminder Tina Lugowski (six saves).

Strath Haven 5, Penncrest 1 >> Freshman Ashley Hassell recorded a hat trick and Val Henderson tallied twice as the Panthers kept the pressure on Lions’ keeper Brielle McQuiston, who finished with 16 saves.

Lower Merion 2, Garnet Valley 0 >> Bridget Elison and Paige Lawton split time in the cage for the Jaguars, combining for 10 saves, and Eileen Armani, Caroline Carruthers and Lauren Weaver lent support on defense in the loss.

In the Del Val League:

Interboro 2, Chichester 0 >> Molly Dowling set up first-half goals by Steph McCool and Lexy Tansey, and goaltender Jess Hinchey (four saves) received defensive help from Olivia Murphy, Ro Murphy, Alexis Domingo, Haley Hicks and Ava Redding.

In the Bicentennial League:

Delco Christian 9, Bristol 1 >> Beth Yeung set up a first-half goal and then scored four times after intermission, as the Knights (8-4, 6-2) broke the game open. Emma Ellsworth and Alyssa Maldonado added two goals apiece while Maggie Linton contributed a goal and an assist in support of netminder Ana Yee (three saves).

In the Ches-Mont League:

West Chester East 3, Sun Valley 0 >> The Vanguards put up a strong defensive front, headed by goalie Jaclyn Prince with 20 saves.

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