may not hold one of the top four seeds in the MIAA Division 1 North sectional tournament, but it certainly didn't show in Reading.
For the second straight year, the Grey Ghosts will be heading to the sectional semifinals, thanks to their 14-7 victory on what was a rainy Monday afternoon.
Despite any potential hoopla surrounding the Rockets' touted third seed in the tournament, Westford Academy head coach Julie Olivier saw it as just a number.
“We don’t even think about who’s seeded what,” said Olivier. “Every game we’ve played this year we’ve played as if the team is beatable. We don’t think about what the record is or who they’ve played.”
The Rockets scored first, but it was all Westford after that. Westford was able to capitalize on Reading turnovers while taking control of the game physically.
Bailey Mongilo, Taylor Freud, and Jenna Klinka all had a pair of goals for Westford in the first half, helpingthe Grey Ghosts jump out to a 7-4 halftime lead.
Mongilo and Freud each finished with four goals and an assist.
“That was the best game ever,” said Mongillo. “That was so exciting. Everything clicked from defense, midfield to attack. It’s really rewarding to see everything click.”
Goaltender Kalie Boyd came up clutch for the Grey Ghosts stopping five Reading shots, including one on a fast break in the second half that took the wind out of the Rockets’ sails.
“Kalie was incredible,” Mongilo said. “She was telling her defense exactly what she wanted. Kalie really got those big saves in the end.”
Reading scored three goals in less than five minutes early in the second half to close the Westford down to 9-7, but the Grey Ghosts buckled down and scored the final six goals of the game.
With the win, Westford now faces second ranked Andover at 3:30 on Wednesday afternoon, hoping to reverse last year's elimination by the Golden Warriors.
Mongilo said that her and the team learned from that game and know what they have to do to get past Andover this time around.
“I think we just have to come in mentally strong,” Mongilo said. “That’s the biggest thing right now. We’re in the best condition we can be all season; it just comes down to how much we want it and how much we’re focused that day.”