With the inclement weather in the rearview mirror for now, five Penn Charter varsity teams were in action on Tuesday and Wednesday this week. Games included two Inter-Ac League tennis battles, a girls lacrosse contest against the undefeated No.1-ranked team in the area, a pair of long bus rides out to Malvern Prep for the baseball and boys lacrosse squads, and a non-league softball game against Lawrenceville Prep. Let’s take a closer look back at the early week action:
Head coach Colleen Kelly has never shied away from scheduling top-notch non-league opponents to test her girls’ competitive spirit. Tuesday was no different, as the Quakers traveled to Radnor to visit Archbishop Carroll, who came into the game with a perfect 16-0 record and the designation of the top-ranked girls team in the Philadelphia area. By the time this one ended, Carroll would indeed be 17-0, but PC made it anything but easy in the 10-9 loss. The score was tied at 5 at halftime, and the Quakers, ranked No. 5 by Philly Lacrosse, took Carroll to the wire and nearly dealt the Patriots their first loss of the season.
Despite the defeat, the Quakers got a huge game from Darcy Felter, who scored 4 goals while adding 2 assists, 7 draw controls and 2 ground balls. In fact, Felter scored 3 straight goals in the second half to tie the score at 8, before Carroll took the lead for good. Felter had lots of help from her teammates, especially Charlotte Hodgson, who continued her stellar play of late by scoring 3 goals to go with 2 assists, a draw control and ground ball. Maddie Shoup (assist, 2 draw controls) and Bea Buckley (2 ground balls) also scored for the Quakers, and Grace Walter (2 assists, ground ball), Alex Glomb (assist, ground ball) and Lauren Anderson (ground ball) also found their way onto the stat sheet. Kayla Joyce made 8 saves in goal in a strong effort against a team loaded with talent.
"We had a great game against Carroll,” Kelly said. “We went down two times in the game by three or four goals and we were able to fight back and showed a lot of great things both on defense and offense. We had our opportunity to tie up the game in the last two minutes and just were not able to seal the deal. We are trying to learn from these games and become stronger and more prepared for the state playoffs next week. I was very proud of the team and the way they played against a very strong Carroll team."
PC is 15-5 overall on the season, with a 7-3 mark in Inter-Ac play. The team will play in New Jersey at Moorestown this Thursday at 3:45 before returning to league play Friday at Baldwin (4 p.m.).
When Penn Charter hosted one of the league frontrunners, Malvern Prep, on April 21, not much went PC’s way as the Friars easily prevailed 17-9. On Tuesday, the Quakers traveled out to Malvern, and while the team lost, this game was much more competitive, resulting in an eventual 11-9 Friars triumph. Colin Michener (assist) and Chet Kempinski were the headliners in this one as each scored four times, while Russ Fitzgerald also found the back of the net and converted 7 of his 12 faceoffs. Gavin Michener and Owen Black each tallied 3 assists, while George Glomb went 9-for-13 in the faceoff circle. Perhaps the biggest star of the show was junior goalie Noah Dacanay, who kept the Quakers in the game while stopping 16 shots from Malvern’s high-powered attack.
“Noah stepped up in the second half and played like we knew he could all year,” head coach Pat McDonough said. “He gave us an opportunity to win the game, along with a lot of guys stepping up and making plays to support his effort.”
Penn Charter has an 11-12 overall record and a 1-8 mark in Inter-Ac play following the tightly-contested battle. The Quakers will host Germantown Academy on Friday at 4 p.m. in the team’s regular season finale.
In what is shaping up to be a very busy week for Penn Charter tennis, Philip Stevens’ team had matches against league rivals on Tuesday and Wednesday, with another scheduled for Friday.
On Wednesday, PC traveled to SCH Academy for its penultimate match of the season, securing a tightly-contested 4-3 win. The team’s top three singles players — senior Liam Birnie, freshman Nate Arnold and junior Justin Cockerham — all won their matches by identical 6-2, 6-0 scores. It was the No. 4 doubles team of sophomores Justin Gantz and Jake Morgan that came up huge for the Quakers, battling from behind in the second set before forcing a tense tie-breaker, prevailing 6-3, 7-6 and sealing the match in Penn Charter’s favor.
A day earlier at home versus GA, Birnie continued his stellar play this season by providing the lone win for the Quakers that afternoon with a hard-fought 7-5, 6-3 straight-set win. The Quakers lost the match to the Patriots, 6-1.
Up next is Friday’s makeup match at Malvern, which was rained out last week. It will be PC’s final contest of the season.
The baseball team was riding a 4-game win streak as it made the long trip out to Malvern on Tuesday. Unfortunately for the Quakers, the Friars (now 20-2 on the season) were up for the challenge and sealed a 9-3 home win over a scrappy PC team. Senior CF Vincent Fattore (2-for-3, home run, double) struck first for the Quakers, crushing a solo home run in the top of the first to give the visitors a 1-0 advantage. Starting pitcher Scott Doran was sharp his first time through the Malvern order, but then the Friars were able to take advantage of some PC miscues on defense and never looked back from there. Malvern scored 8 of its 9 runs in the third inning, highlighted by a grand slam. Despite the loss, head coach Justin Hanley was proud of his team’s recent strong play, as well as its continued ability to fight even in the face of some bad luck this season.
“We certainly seem to be snakebitten this year, but these kids don’t know how to quit,” Hanley said. “After a four-game losing streak, we went back to the drawing board in order to change our offensive approach, which seemed to show instant results in league wins over SCH and Haverford. While we’ve fallen short of our goal of a league championship, we have our sights set on making a run in the upcoming PAISAA Tournament.”
The Quakers will travel to Neumann-Goretti on Thursday before hosting GA on Friday (both games are scheduled for 4 p.m.).
The Quakers were back at it Wednesday afternoon in a non-league game against Lawrenceville Prep. PC fell behind early and faced a 3-0 deficit in the first inning, making it look like it would be tough sledding toward a comeback. But with patience and focus, Penn Charter was able to rally and take a 4-3 lead after five innings, in large part thanks to freshman pitcher Ryan Hatty, who settled down after a rocky first frame and did not give up another run through her four innings of work. Hatty got some help from the PC offense, most notably Macie Bergmann, who was a perfect 4-for-4 on the day with an RBI single, a double, two runs scored (including the go-ahead run in the fifth) and a stolen base.
Bergmann was aided by several of her teammates. Eighth grader Maddy Wray continued to show why she is already a varsity player, going 3-for-4 with an RBI single and a run scored, while also flashing her glove with an amazing catch in the fifth to keep the game close. Elsewhere, Kamryn Koslosky went 1-for-4 with a stolen base and run scored. Lauren Gedraitis also went 1-for-4 and relieved Hatty in the pitching circle for the final three innings, and Arielle Willis had the go-ahead RBI double in the home fifth. Unfortunately for PC, Lawrenceville clubbed a 3-run home run in the top of the 7th, and the Quakers ultimately lost a 6-4 heartbreaker. The girls will be back in action on Friday as they hit the road and head to Baldwin for a 4 p.m. showdown.