Tyla Ozgen (in blue), photo above, scored three goals in Staples’ 6-2, field hockey victory over Trumbull on Thursday night. / Photos by Andy Hutchison
The Wreckers’ Leah Larit, photo at left, and Sofia Fidalgo, right photo, in action during the team’s season-opening win.

By Andy Hutchison

TRUMBULL — Locked in a tight battle with the host Trumbull High Eagles, the Staples field hockey team built off a buzzer-beating goal to end the third quarter and pulled away for a deceptively lopsided 6-2 win Thursday night.

Tyla Ozgen scored three times, and Alex Hackett, Emma Larit and Mary Stevens all found the back of the cage.

Ozgen scored in the opening minutes, assisted by Sofia Fidalgo, and it was 1-0 after one quarter of play. Ozgen blasted a shot from 15 yards out for a 2-0 lead midway through the second quarter. Hackett knocked home the loose ball during a scramble off a penalty corner, one of 13 corners the Wreckers generated during the contest.

Emma Larit

The Eagles struck with 2:21 left before the half and proved they were not going to go away with a cage-finder midway through the third quarter which trimmed the deficit to just 3-2.

A long run by Ozgen led to Larit gaining possession on the right wing and firing a hard, high shot perfectly off the far post and in just before the third quarter buzzer sounded. It was 4-2 Wreckers after three.

The Wreckers — with their newfound momentum — continued to apply heavy pressure early in the fourth. 

A violation in front of the goal led to a penalty stroke and Ozgen calmly put home the fifth tally with a low deposit to the left side with 7:19 left. 

Leah Larit gained control to cap a pretty passing sequence and sent a shot toward an opening in the cage that Stevens tapped in for the final goal with 5:06 left.

“Overall, I’m pretty happy,” Coach Ian Tapsall said of Staples’ first game of the regular season.

There is room for improvement, including utilizing the give-and-go when in possession and becoming more decisive on defense, he said.

“We’ve got to get used to playing with each other,” Tapsall added.

The field hockey team’s next game is at 4 p.m. Monday, Sept. 11, when St. Joseph High of Trumbull visits. (Game schedules are subject to change; click for the latest CIAC updates.)

Andy Hutchison has been covering school sports — including Staples athletics — as well as news and feature stories in Fairfield County, since the 1990s.