Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

Sports

October 17, 2013

Panneton leads the way for field hockey team

Panneton delivers in new role for AHS field hockey team

Mikayla Panneton admits to being a little bonkers, both on the field and off.

“I’m kind of energetic,” she said with a laugh. “I have a loud voice that makes girls listen to me whether they want to or not. I’m loud. You could point me out in a crowd no problem.”

But while it sometimes means two or three calls on her cellphone per day, Andover field hockey coach Maureen Noone wouldn’t want her star and tri-captain any other way.

“It doesn’t matter what we ask from Mikayla,” Noone said. “She will do anything for this team. She is a very vocal leader and a heck of a player. She is always organizing and double-checking everything. And when we needed help in the midfield, we moved her back and she has been terrific. She can do anything”

Panneton has not only accepted the move to midfield this season, she has embraced it and delivered a breakout campaign.

With just two career goals heading into the season, the Merrimack College-bound Panneton has scored nine times this fall, helping lead the Golden Warriors’ field hockey team to a 9-1-2 record though Monday, including a key victory over previously unbeaten Chelmsford on Saturday.

“This season just keeps getting better and better,” Panneton said. “We started off strong, and now we are really playing well. It’s too strange that I am actually a senior.”

It was another — similarly named — sport that first led Panneton to what is now her greatest passion.

“I probably never would have played field hockey if it wasn’t for (ice) hockey,” said Panneton, who is also a starting forward for the Warriors’ varsity hockey team. “I have been playing ice hockey since I was 8 years old. I love it. Sometimes I catch myself throwing an elbow in field hockey. I sometimes don’t know the line when it comes to pushing and shoving in field hockey. But it makes me more aggressive than most.

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