Bill Iezzi: Field Hockey Goal Rush

When Florence lost to Pingry, 2-1, in double overtime in the North Jersey Group 2 quarterfinals on Nov. 1, Lexi Smith’s stick was silenced. The Flashes finished the season with a 15-4 record after going 15-1.

Smith, a sophomore, leads the area in goals scored with 43. However, on her heels is Megan DeMarco of St. Joseph’s of Hammonton, who has 42 goals. The Wildcats are scheduled to play for the South Jersey Group 1 crown on Nov. 8 and DeMarco can take over the lead.

Florence scored one goal in its last three games, two of which went into overtime. The goal was scored by Smith off a corner to give Florence a 1-0 lead over Pingry. However, the Big Blue tied the score, 1-1, in regulation and won in OT.

“We’re usually a strong 77 team [7 on 7 in overtime],” said Florence coach Gina Smith, Lexi’s mother. “We outshot them [Pingry] 13-6, and had more corners. We couldn’t finish, which is uncharacteristic of us.

“We can’t change what happened, but we can fix it for next year. We have a great nucleus coming back."

Meanwhile, Lexi, her mother and her aunt Diane Carey-Stranko, whose single season record of 46 goals is safe at Florence until next year, are preparing to fly to Phoenix , Ariz. Lexi will play for South Jersey Intensity in the U.S. Festival, Nov. 24-27.