By Ricky Pollitt
Megan Wallenhorst had another career day where she recorded nine total points. The junior attacker registered four goals, five assists and has stepped up in recent weeks with Salisbury missing seniors Bethany Baer, Shelby Nemecek and Kate Haker due to injury.
“We had our offense click again, and we did a good job taking care of the ball,” Wallenhorst said. “We knew if we won this one tonight we’d be hosting in the CAC, so we’re really excited for that.”
Wallenhorst now leads Salisbury in goals with 30 on the year. Nestor obviously preferred an injury free season, but knew Wallenhorst always had the capability to step up when needed.
“She’s shown with players out that her play can step up. She’s doing a great job, and hopefully she’ll continue to do so,” Nestor said.
The Gulls had five other players put goals on the board against the Hawks including attacks Katelin Talbert (2), Hannah Young (2), Kristen Murphy (2), Dana King (2), and midfielder Gabbi Nieves (1).
The Sea Gulls defense also rose to the occasion in a game they needed to most. Salisbury forced 18 turnovers, scooped up 13 ground balls, and only allowed 12 shots to be taken by St. Mary’s offense.
For a victory, the Sea Gulls had to shut down one of the CAC’s most successful players in Tori Poffenberger who came into the game with 44 goals on the season – the most in the conference. She registered just one goal against the Sea Gulls.
“They definitely have some kids who can put the ball away,” Nestor said. “I thought we did a nice job containing some of their high-powered players.”
The defense has been on point the last few weeks allowing only 5.54 goals per game, while freshman goalie Gianna Falcone has recorded 59 saves with a .590 save percentage.
“We’ve been learning a lot about the other teams and learning how they play,” Falcone said. “If we play together as a whole and not as individuals we do a lot better.”
Salisbury now will prepare for the final stretch of the regular season. The Sea Gulls will face TCNJ and Marymount to close out the year.
Regardless of the outcome of the two games, the Sea Gulls will host at least one matchup once the CAC tournament rolls around.
“We’ll just be watching film and learning as much as we can about our opponent,” Wallenhorst said. “If we just keep playing the way we have these past few games, I don’t think there’s any reason we can’t come out on top.”