Shannon Decosta (29) takes a strong swing on the ball.

By Lesley Graham

The Ocean City High School field hockey team started the week off on the right foot with a 7-0 win over conference foe Vineland. Ocean City improves to 8-0 in conference play (9-1 overall) while Vineland drops to 1-5-1 (2-5-1 overall).

Alexis Smallwood (45) takes shot on goal.

Senior Jaclyn Charbonneau scored twice on the afternoon, while Molly Reardon had one goal and two assists. Sophia Gresham had one goal, one assist.  Fellow teammates Shannon Decosta and Tara McNally each contributed a goal and Chloe Prettyman rounded out the scoring for Ocean City with an assist.

Tara McNally (21) pushes the ball upfield.

Unlike previous home games at the turf stadium, Monday afternoon’s game was played on grass, which had an effect on the game.

“It takes a little bit of adjustment”, Mitchell said about playing on grass. The ball can take a bad hop and lose some power so it takes a little getting used to.  Mitchell said it’s important to have home games on the grass every once in awhile as they have more games on grass as the season continues.

Molly Reardon (22) takes a shot.

Ocean City scored in the first 10 minutes of the opening half and then rattled off four more goals in less than eight minutes . The Red Raiders added the final two goals in the second half tallying a total of 18 shots on goal for the game.

This is the second time Ocean City has faced Vineland this season and Head Coach Kelsey Mitchell was pleased with the outcome. “We knew they had an athletic goalie and they play hard,” said Mitchell.  As they approach the back half of conference play, Ocean City tries not to lose sight of their goals of the season.  “If we play our game, we are in good shape.  We try not to focus too much on the outside factors.  We like to stay within ourselves and our expectations,” added Mitchell.

Meredith Moon (17) makes a play on the ball.

Ocean City was able to get multiple players in the game, allowing for some of the team’s starters to get a bit of a break. With a busy week ahead, the extra rest is beneficial since Ocean City has three remaining games on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.  And although it may be easy to get ahead of themselves, Mitchell remains steadfast in her philosophy for the season.  “We don’t like to look ahead.  We go one day at a time.”