BY TIM TAYLOR
Valley Sports Report
SPENCER — Tioga may have lost their season finale Thursday, but head coach Jodi Riggs was pleased with the Tigers' performance in a 5-2 loss to SVEC on the Eagles' Senior Night.
"So proud of them," she said. "We just talked about this. Everything we worked for in the season came into play and they fought hard for that. Last game, what a way to go out."
Tioga fell behind 3-0, but would find the back of the cage with 16:49 remaining in the game on Olivia Ayres' unassisted goal.
Michaela Webb closed out her career with the Tigers' final goal of the season, scoring unassisted with 1:05 left in the game.
SVEC battled a tough Tioga defense early, but Taya Sousa eventually snapped the scoreless deadlock when she put away a rebound of a Kim Tarbox save at 17:40 of the first half.
MecKenzie Marsh made it 2-0 at 12:57 with an assist going to Adriana Newman.
The two-goal difference would remain until Sousa scored at 21:20 of the second half. Rhiana Lawrence picked up the assist.
The Eagles' Ryleigh Clark made it 4-1 with 11:13 left in the game and Sousa completed a hat trick, scoring at 7:56 with Lawrence adding another assist, pushing the home team's advantage to 5-1.
"We did a lot of good stuff tonight," said SVEC head coach Abby Gentile. "Our offense, we were able to put the ball in the back of the goal, which is always nice. We played a lot of games where we've been up there, had our opportunities and just haven't found it. Tonight we did. The girls had their sticks down. They were really ready for it."
Riggs felt Tioga's performance was a nice way to bid farewell to the six senior members of the team — Hannah Fox, Emily Pipher, Kim Tarbox, Jade VanZile, Webb and Addy Whitmore.
"I think it's a good game to walk away from," she said.
Tioga didn't win enough games to qualify for the sectional tournament, but its two wins doubled the number the Tigers had in 2018.
"I'm looking forward to next year," Riggs said.
SVEC outshot Tioga, 10-9, and held a 6-5 edge in penalty corners.
Bella Young and Raegan Sudnikovich combined for seven saves for the Eagles. Tarbox made three saves and the Tigers also had a defensive save.
IN PHOTO 1: Tioga's Olivia Ayres (R) and SVEC's Ryleigh Clark. ... PHOTOS BY TIM TAYLOR
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