Panthers get play-in win


The Johnston girls lacrosse team won its play-in matchup last week when it upset Classical 9-5 to advance to the quarterfinals against East Providence. 

Hannah Lavergne led Johnston with five goals and an assist while Kaylee Poole added a hat trick. Courtney Dias also added a goal, while goalie Riley Guenette recorded six stops in the cage.  

The Johnston Lady Panthers were topped 14-6 by the Ponaganset Lady Chieftains last Wednesday during the final game of their Division III lacrosse regular season.The Lady Chieftains got four goals apiece from Ella Dexter and Brook Batista, while Mitzie Westgate recorded three goals and two assists. Jaina Yekelchik and Christiana Goncalves also found the back of the net for Ponaganset with two goals, and a goal, respectively, while Hannah Parker added an assist.Johnston was led by sophomores Hannah Lavergne, who registered four goals, and Kaylee Poole, a goal and an assist.“Hannah and Kaylee have been strong all season with the goal scoring,” Lady Panthers head coach Jay Areson said. “Those are the two that we look forward to. Sam Marcotte, a very good passer, distributes the ball really well. The middies played really well too.”Rachel Ixcotoyac, a senior, also scored a goal for Johnston, while Marcotte and Haliee McDaniel finished with an assist apiece.Ponaganset junior goalkeeper Skyla Picard made 14 saves and Riley Guenette made ten for Johnston.“Riley’s been solid all year,” Areson said. “She’s been making some phenomenal saves. She’s kept us in a lot of ball games . . . They’re all young, Riley’s a sophomore, so it’s going to look pretty good in a couple years.”The Lady Panthers finished the season with a final record of 4-8 after moving down from DII to DIII this year.Last year, Johnston went winless, but this year, they won four games in a row at the end of the season.“We went on a nice little winning streak at the beginning of May, which was nice,” Areson said. “The girls' boosted their confidence a lot coming into today. The girls were very happy, and they’ve built a lot of confidence moving ahead.”All in all, Areson considers this year to be a successful one, and he believes the future looks bright.“I’m very happy with the way the season turned out this year,” Areson concluded. “Coming off of last year, Division II, 0-12 was a tough thing. It was good to see the girls smiling and get a couple wins. Young team, 12 sophomores. So, moving forward, it looks good. “They don’t give up. These girls never give up, which is a nice feeling to have and a nice character moving forward.”


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