By Mal Boright
After ending a scoring draught Saturday with a 2-1 Spirit Day victory over visiting Essex High, the Champlain Valley Union High field hockey team headed down Route 116 for Bristol and Mount Abraham Union on Wednesday to test a solid Eagles combine.
The Redhawks will then be back on the asphalt Saturday for a 10 a.m. confrontation in Middlebury against traditional power Middlebury Union High.
The next home game is on Tuesday, when Burlington High comes to the Redhawks’ cozy hillside nest (4 p.m.).
Shutout for five consecutive halves and trailing Essex 1-0, CVU’s junior midfielder Robin Powell was the great zero breaker on Saturday when she popped home a goal following a penalty corner just under three minutes into the second half. Emma Griesser drew an assist.
“I was there at the right time,” said a happy Powell after the game.
The winning tally came with 19:30 to go and was scored by junior Katie Arms, her third goal of the campaign.
“Katie made it happen,” said CVU coach Kate McDonald.
Essex’s best chance to tie the game came with just over a minute remaining, when an Essex crossing pass rolled in front of the cage, but the Redhawks’ Jenna Cloutier was on the case and protecting the net while goalie Evangeline Dunphy worked the other side.
Dunphy, with her specialty kick saves, had three first-half stops before Essex got its lone goal a little over six minutes before intermission, when Sierra Villemaire launched a shot out of a crowd into the left corner.
CVU had an edge in territorial play in the first half, as Emily O’Brien and Kathryn Loucks led the midfield and backfield crew in keeping control of the action. But CVU was held off the scoreboard until Powell struck.
It was the 2-1-1 Redhawks’ first score since Arms deposited a pair in the 2-0 opening day win at Colchester High.