Ruthie Laroche – Messenger Sports

SWANTON- The shadows were lengthening on the field as MVU and visiting North Country fought to get a ball into the net in Monday’s varsity field hockey contest.

After two scoreless halves and a scoreless overtime, the teams left the field with a tie. 

MVU displayed a clear advantage possessing the ball on the field, but despite numerous opportunities, the Thunderbirds couldn’t capitalize.

“We had one shot hit off the post in overtime, and we had many opportunities in overtime and in regulation play. We controlled the game well tonight, but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be,” said MVU varsity coach Jeanne Rainville.

“To North Country’s credit, they didn’t quit. They seemed to step it up each minute of the game,” said Rainville. “North Country always gives us a good game; we always have tight games with them.”

On the bright side, the Thunderbird defense deterred North Country, keeping the ball clear of the scoring circle for most of the game and offensive players kept the pressure on their opponents. 

“Overall we dominated the play, there’s no doubt about that. Skill-wise, I have some very skilled players this year,” said Rainville. “We passed the ball well and had a lot of good movement with the ball. That’s what we did the best today.”

Regardless of individual game outcomes, Rainville, who’s headed the MVU field hockey team for years, enjoys the kids. 

“I’m always blessed with some very fine young ladies, and this is a fun group.”

The remaining season holds games with a number of teams including Montpelier, Stowe, Harwood, and U32.

“We scrimmaged Stowe, and they’re going to be a tough team to beat,” said Rainville. “Harwood and U32 are both DII teams, so they are definitely pulling from a larger group of kids than we do in DIII.”

MVU will face Mount Abraham on Wednesday. 

Photos by Adam Laroche