JOHNSTOWN - In honor of breast cancer awareness month, the Johnstown field hockey team hosted its annual "Stick It to Cancer" game Tuesday at Knox Field.
More than $300 was raised for Play 4 the Cure.
In addition to sporting pink socks and using a pink ball, the Lady Bills also wore special ribbons in their hand and shared matching ribbons with Hudson Falls prior to the game.
Johnstown’s Lindsay Brandt (18) pushes the ball past Hudson Falls’ Jessie Johnston (3) during Tuesday’s Foothills Council field hockey game at Knox Field in Johnstown. (The Leader-Herald/Paul Wager)
After exchanging ribbons and pleasantries, Johnstown got down to business, rolling to an 11-0 victory over the Tigers.
Johnstown kept the majority of its usual starts on the bench for half of each half, giving plenty of playing time to most of its players.
"We're already at the halfway point of the season," Johnstown coach Tracy Ringer said. "I feel like the bench should be getting quality playing time whenever possible. It benefits the team and program. We had an opportunity to do that today."
With their starters playing only the final 15 minutes of each half, the Lady Bills were efficient against Hudson Falls. All but two of the 11 goals were scored in the final 15 minutes of each half.
"Overall, I was happy with how we played today," Ringer said. "The team has really been working on its communication skills. Playing only half the game forces the starters to be focused immediately."
Leading the way was Ashley Dona who piled up five goals and an assist for Johnstown.
Lindsay Brandt scored twice for the Lady Bills, while Hope Cerasuolo had a goal and an two assists. Nicole Bentley added a goal and an assist for Johnstown, while Emma Heroth and Alexis Swatt also scored.
Kelsi Barnholt had two assists for the Lady Bills, while Mikaela Etherton and Jenna Hohenforst each had one assist.
With its usual lineup jumbled, Johnstown got out of the gates slowly before finishing the first-half with a four-goal flurry to take a 4-0 lead at the break.
"I think we played well in the first half, but we wore down a little bit in the second half," Hudson Falls coach Liz Brayman said. "We don't have the depth a lot of teams have."
Carasuolo opened the scoring with 10:31 remaining in the first half.
Cerasuolo tally was the first of four scored by the Lady Bills before the halftime whistle.
Dona scored back-to-back goals with 9:40 and 7:32 remaining and Heroth finished the first-half score with 4:05 to play.
After taking nearly 20 minutes to get their first goal in the first half, Johnstown needed just 15 seconds in the second half to make it 5-0.
Swatt scored on the first shot of the half on an assist from Cerasuolo.
Johnstown added six more goals before the final whistle, pushing the final margin to 11-0.
Brandt scored twice in the final 16 minutes, while Dona scored three straight goals in a in a span of 3:47. Bentley also scored to round out the Johnstown scoring.
"Johnstown is a good team. They're a challenge for anybody," Brayman said. "All we can do is keep our heads up and keep kicking away at it."
Nicole Wojtowecz made 19 saves for Hudson Falls after being kept busy by the Johnstown offense.
"I can't fault my goalie," Brayman said. "She gave it her all and made some nice saves."
Alyssa Pertell made just one save to post the shutout win in goal for Johnstown, which finished with a 30-1 advantage in shots and a 7-2 edge in penalty corners.
Pertell was helped by an a unusual group of defenders as the Lady Bills also moved some of their defenders to forward spots during the game.
"I pushed our defenders up to the forward positions so they could experience the urgent that goes with playing up front. Sometimes they get lackadaisical because they don't see as much action in some of our games," Ringer said. "It will help us especially in the postseason."
Hudson Falls will host Gloversville on Thursday, while Johnstown (9-1 overall, 7-0 Foothills) will travel to Glens Falls on Thursday. Both games are set for 4:15 p.m.
"I don't care what Glens Falls' record says. Everybody plays us like it's a championship game anyway," Ringer said. "We're going to come with our 'A' game and hopefully, we'll come out on top."