Stow-Munroe Falls field hockey was set to host Laurel School Sept. 29, as Stow was poised to celebrate Senior Night. However, Mother Nature stepped in and the game was rescheduled Oct. 4.
It was worth the wait for the Bulldogs, as senior forward Sam Houk scored a career-high five goals to lead Stow to an 8-3 victory. This was Houk's fourth hat-trick of the 2016 season.
The senior class also features midfielder Jessica Lloyd, forward Leanne Bunnell and defensive backs Gabby Kingston, Maddy Fink, Audra Harris and Kimmie Schirra.
Stow's record improved to 6-8 as of press time.
The Bulldogs were fired up from the opening whistle as sophomore forward Katie Goodenow got Stow into the scoring column with a goal at the 27:56 mark.
Stow went right back on the attack and less than one minute later Goodenow found Houk near the net as Houk delivered her first goal of the game.
Laurel called a time out just three minutes into the game in an attempt to regroup, but Houk struck seconds later, this time on a beautiful pass by Lloyd as the Bulldogs took an early 3-0 lead.
At the 10:43 mark the Gators took a chunk out of the Bulldogs defense as Anna Mino scored for Laurel to cut the deficit 3-1. After a Stow timeout, the Bulldogs once again controlled the tempo and pushed deep into Laurel's territory. The Bulldogs battered the Gators defense.
After three penalty corners junior midfielder Audrey Grone found the back of the net with just five second remaining in the first half to push Stow's lead to 4-1 heading into intermission.
Houk, however, was just getting started.
Sophomore Kia Tubergen assisted Houk for her third goal of the game with just over 25 minutes remaining in the second half.
Goodenow rejoined the scoring party a minute later as she drove through defenders to pick up her second goal of the game and Stow took a commanding 6-1 lead.
After the teams exchanged corners, Laurel's Erin Dyke scored her first goal of the game to cut the lead to 6-2 with 11 minutes remaining. Dyke wasn't done as she regained the ball and pushed through Stow's defense and found the net for a second time at the 9:13 mark.
Lloyd played a stellar game for the Bulldogs from her midfield position as she supported the defense while nimbly controlling the ball, navigating up the field setting the table for the offense.
Junior forward Ella Roberts contributed to the offense as well as the Bulldogs strived to regain control of the game.
At the 7:39 mark, Goodenow recorded her second assist of the game, locating Houk who steered through a pack of Gators to score her fourth goal of the game to give the Bulldogs a 7-3 cushion.
The Bulldog defense - led by Fink, Kingston, Harris, Schirra and junior sweeper Kerri Lockard and junior defensive back Jenna Lynner -- kept Laurel at bay for the balance of the game.
Houk finished off the Bulldogs scoring with a late goal to give her five goals for the day 8-3.
Sophomore goalkeeper Emma Hurguy had another fine game in goal as she recorded 7 saves for the Bulldogs in the victory.
Stow was scheduled to travel to Gates Mills to play Hawken Oct. 6, but results were not available at press time.
The Bulldogs will play their regular season finale at home Oct. 11 at 4:30 p.m. vs Kent Roosevelt.