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Bears Blank Cards

Claremont — Newfound scored in the second half to deal the Stevens High field hockey team its third 1-0 loss in its last four games on Thursday.

After winning their first four games, the Cardinals face the tough part of their schedule — three games in one week against Derryfield, Hopkinton and Rutland. Derryfield and Hopkinton have a combined 16-1 record and Rutland is a Vermont Division I team with just two losses. The Rutland game, a 3-1 Stevens win, was played the day after the Hopkinton game.

Stevens coach Patty Deschaine met with the team for a long time after Thursday’s loss. She knows that besides the rough schedule, the team has not up to snuff offensively. Yesterday, the Cardinals were out-shot 14-1 and the Bears had a 14-4 advantage in corners.

“I know I’ve got a good team here, but we’re just not clicking yet,” Deschaine said. “Once we start clicking, we’ll be OK.”

The defeat to Newfound probably had an effect on the New Hampshire Division III standings as well. Stevens (5-3) was in fifth place entering Thursday’s action, and Newfound (6-3) was in sixth.

Newfound has been going through a lot of the ills that have affected Stevens, as the Bears have lost two out of three, and the losses were both 2-0 shutouts to Gilford and Winnisquam.

“In the loss to Winnisquam we out-shot them 15-5, but couldn’t finish a thing,” Newfound coach Karrie Peterson said. “It is frustrating. I don’t know what’s wrong.

“Two of the girls up front were there last year,” she added. “We did lose a high-scoring right wing to graduation.”

Cassandra Cutts, the Stevens goalkeeper, is in the midst of a strong season, and on Thursday, she was at her best with 13 saves. She continually kept the Cardinals in the game, flashing those big pads to keep the Bears out of her cage.

The only ball that got by Cutts came with about nine minutes left in the second half, when an Andrea Markiewicz centering pass was one-timed passed her with a swiping move by Amber Plummer.

“Otherwise we might still be out there playing,” said Peterson, who, while upset with the team’s inability to finish, knew that the defenders were keeping the ball away from Newfound keeper Megan Sharp.

“Thank goodness for our defense,” she said.

Stevens will have little time to get over this game as the Cardinals visit Newport today.