GLOBE WEST SPORTS NOTEBOOK
Around the net, there is no denying Kathryn Nelson.
A prolific point producer on the girls' field hockey team at Shrewsbury High (class of 2008), she has developed into a consistent goal scorer in her three seasons on the Stonehill College squad.
Earlier this month, Nelson lifted the Skyhawks in dramatic fashion past Northeast-10 Conference rival Bentley University, netting both the tying and winning goals for a 3-2 victory in double overtime. Senior captainLaura Noce, a Dual County League All-Star at Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High, assisted on both tallies.
"I just had an adrenaline rush through my whole body after the winning goal,'' said Nelson. It was the 13th of the season for the junior forward, setting a career high and pulling her within seven of the program mark. "If I get to 20 goals that would be awesome, but the important thing is to win as a team. We lost two of our best scorers from last year and I'm just trying to step up and do my part.''
Stonehill head coach Shelly Morris said she has been impressed with the leadership shown by Nelson and Noce.
"Kathryn has such a determined attitude when it comes to scoring. She plays with great intensity every game,'' said Morris, whose 8-4 team was ranked seventh in Division 2 in last week's Kookaburra/National Field Hockey Coaches Association poll. "And Laura is an anchor to our backfield. She missed a few games early in the season, but since her return, we've really been able to limit our opponents' scoring opportunities.''
Nelson, who had three goals as a freshman and 11 last fall in her first year as a starter at Stonehill, said her sophomore season was a confidence-builder.
"I started to get a better sense of where to be on the field, and Coach Morris has been a huge inspiration,'' said Nelson, Stonehill's top scorer with 29 points. Her legacy at Shrewsbury High includes setting a field hockey record with 109 career points; she was named the Central Mass. Player of the Year in 2007, when she led the team to the state final.
Nelson also played three seasons on the basketball squad at Shrewsbury, after sharpening her skills against her older brothers, Brian and Steve, who played college ball at Williams and Hamilton, respectively.
Nelson and Noce's teammates at Stonehill include another Shrewsbury grad, freshman back Gina Sheehan; (sophomore forward Alexandra Shea (Belmont High); and sophomore midfielder Jessica Laurendeauand sophomore goalie Kaitlyn Curtis, both of Acton.