Field hockey

Bellows Falls’ Maya Waryas, right, and Springfield’s Reilly Tennis, left, and Josie Protas compete during Monday’s game.

Theresa O'Connor walked the campus of Central Michigan University, where she played NCAA Division I field hockey for the Chippewas from 1992-95.

Now, she is watching daughters Katie and Jenna Sunderland wearing the same Rutland Raider red she once played in on the same field hockey field.

The Sunderland sisters, Alexis Patterson and company comprise a formidable attack and the Raiders are branding themselves as a Division I state title contender.

It's the last go-round for seniors Kaylee Kosmalski, Jillian Conway, Lauren Calvin, Gianna Pezzetti, Katie Sunderland, Sydney Erickson-Marott, Haley Lassen, Lea Zmurko and Grace Raymond. They would love to be playing in the biggest game on Nov. 2.

That will not be easy. There are a lot of good teams in Division I.

Wednesday, they will get a tough test but it will be from the Division II Hartford Hurricanes in Rutland.

Hartford has one of the state's proudest field hockey programs with 17 state championship appearances with 11 titles — eight outright.

This will be a good barometer for the Raiders in a matchup of two of the teams that have earned a spot in the first Rutland Herald / Times Argus power rankings of the season.

1. South Burlington (3-0). The Division I Wolves have gutted out tough wins over CVU, Rutland and Rice.

2. Hartford (3-0). The Hurricanes are down in Division II after spending more than two decades as a Division I program. They are a quality unit that has outscored the opposition 12-1.

3. Otter Valley (1-1). The experienced Otters return most of a team that gave Mount Abraham more than it wanted in the 2019 D-II semifinal contest. The opener was an impressive 4-0 win over Brattleboro.

4. Mount Abraham (1-0-1). Every year the Eagles put a team on the field that is a Division II title contender.

5. Windsor (2-0). The Yellow Jackets could own Division III this year and would possibly be a contender in the other divisions as well. They ended Bellows Falls' 58-game winning streak.

6. Rutland (2-1). The Raiders' 3-2 comeback victory over CVU was impressive. The 2-0 loss on the turf at South Burlington wasn't that shabby a result, either.

7. Bellows Falls (2-2). These aren't your Terriers that took a 57-game winning streak into the season, but they aren't bad. Remember, Bethany Coursen didn't just build teams made for that great run, she built a program.

8. CVU (2-2). The losses were each by a goal to very good teams, South Burlington and Rutland.

9. Mount Mansfield (1-1). A one-goal loss to CVU and win over Colchester makes a solid resume.

10. Colchester (2-2). The Lakers' losses are by a goal apiece to Mount Mansfield and Mount Abe.

On the bubble: Essex, Spaulding, Stowe, Lyndon and Missisquoi.

Follow Tom on Twitter: @RHSportsGuy

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