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Sometimes it’s not only the wins and losses that determine a successful season to this point.

Take Octorara for example, where coach Christina Ruth is thrilled with where her team is heading behind it’s 4-5-1 mark in its first 10 games.

“Our whole season has been a surprise,” Ruth said. “From the offseason to now, our team has shown up and has dedicated themselves to making improvements from last season. We have had our fair share of losses, but because of our mentality and attitudes, our wins have been that much sweeter.”

Following a winless 2020 campaign, the Braves have changed their outlook and, according to Ruth, winning is not only what happens between the lines.

“This team has made strides in building their community both on and off the field,” she said. “Their camaraderie is something to be admired and their presence is known when they are on the field. We are coming off a losing season, so the fact that the girls trusted in themselves enough to come back out speaks volumes.”

Scoring has not been an issue and Octorara has a balanced attack with 10 players having scored at least one goal so far this season.

Delany Amole, Devon Carroll, Gianna Lambert and Ja’Syah James-Paskings have each scored three goals this season. Carroll leads the way with four helpers and Lambert has three assists.

Ruth added that with three freshmen starting on varsity and growth on the younger squads, the Braves’ future is looking pretty good as well.

The coach said the team is looking forward to celebrating its senior night on Monday against border rival Solanco.

“We are really looking forward to playing them again,” Ruth said. “We had a great run with them in the beginning of the year (on their Senior Night) where we won, and I know they are going to come back with a vengeance ready to fight.”

Warriors shock Comets

Knocking off Penn Manor has been challenging enough for Section One teams over the past several seasons and this year started off the same as the Comets soared out to a 9-0 record.

However, Thursday night, Warwick found the magic, shutting out Penn Manor through regulation, then capturing the victory when Lauren Leister scored in overtime, lifting the Warriors to a 1-0 victory.

Warwick keeper Paige Sheppard, along with her defensive mates, were splendid in the win.

Extra help provided

Lancaster Mennonite senior Rebecca Lane had quite a night when the Blazers topped Eastern York. Lane assisted on the first four goals of the game and scored a marker later in the first half of the 8-1 victory.

Big games this week

Tuesday features a battle of the Section Three frontrunners when Elco hosts Garden Spot. The Spartans sit atop the section at 5-1 in league play, 7-2 overall while the Raiders are 4-2, 7-4. Of course, you can’t overlook Annville-Cleona (4-1, 6-2), which defeated Elco 2-1 Friday on Ainsley Sellers’ overtime goal.

The next day, Penn Manor (4-1, 9-1) travels to Manheim Township (4-1, 6-3) for a Section One showdown with sole possession of first on the line.

September closes Thursday with Lancaster Catholic (2-1, 3-3) at first-place Lancaster Mennonite (3-0, 8-0) in Section Four.

That’s not to forget Section Two, where four teams — Donegal (4-1), Ephrata (3-2), Manheim Central (3-2) and Lampeter-Strasburg (3-2) — are all above .500 with several games between them this week.

Field hockey fodder

Lancaster Mennonite remains the highest-scoring team in the L-L with 34 goals through eight games. Elco is second with 30.

The Blazers have also allowed the fewest goals (6) on the season. Penn Manor has yielded only seven.

• Steve Navaroli is a sports correspondent who covers L-L field hockey for LNP. Email him via, and follow him on Twitter at @SteveNavaroli.

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