Girls’ Soccer Scrimmages Class AA Foe

This afternoon, beneath cloudless skies, the girls’ soccer team took on Class AA Centereach in a scrimmage on Fitch Field. The Bears showed their mettle against their opponents, a school nearly seven times our size, losing a hard-fought 2-1 decision played out over four 20-minute quarters.

1st Quarter

The opening frame was evenly split as we were on the offensive for the first ten minutes while the Cougars were the aggressors for the second half. Kelsey Wentling had a nice shot on goal and Brianna Stiklickas put two beautiful corners on the doorstep, but neither was converted. Centereach had one excellent chance at first blood when a well-played cross trickled tantalizingly close toward the goal, but out of bounds. Any other chances the Cougars had were quickly snuffed out by the closing speed of Stiklickas who will once again prove invaluable in the backfield. | 0-0

2nd Quarter

Our offensive chances picked up in the second quarter as Kierran Petersen and Donna Liotine both put great attempts on goal while Michelle Hennessy had a 1-on-1 chance with the goalie just before the end of the quarter that was spoiled by a fingertip save. The staunch defense continued as Stiklickas swept away nearly every offensive chance the Cougars had and newcomer, sophomore Madison Rylands, added some welcome physicality, leaving goalkeeper Danielle Pappas a bit bored during the frame. We hope she will have an exceedingly boring season. | 0-0

3rd Quarter

The third period made up for the lack of offense in the first half. It began with a great individual effort from Liotine who took the ball from midfield, blew past five or six defenders, had a shot attempt deflected, then recovered the ball that should have been won by two Cougar defenders, and ripped a shot that just grazed the top of the crossbar. Shortly after that Centereach scored the first goal of the game as the defense was unable to run down a forward who received a great through-ball. Our equalizer came not long after as Hennessy punched the back of the net following a throw-in deep in enemy territory. Centereach threatened several more times before the frame ended, but Pappas yet again proved her value to our team. After the Cougars sent a glancing blow off of the post, Pappas made a gorgeous over-the-shoulder catch on a shot destined for the side netting. She followed that up with a great diving save on a direct kick just outside the penalty area. The Bears were more than competing with their bigger foe in the evenly matched contest. Coach Mark Maningo echoed these sentiments when he told his girls during the brief intermission, “This has been a good test.” | 1-1

4th Quarter

Missed chances tell the story of the final period. The Cougars scored the eventual winning goal as a result of a failed clear, but the Bears took control of the tempo for most of the remaining minutes, firing several shots on goal. The best opportunity came on a penalty kick won in the waning moments of the contest, but an unfriendly kiss off the iron sealed Stony Brook’s fate. | 1-2


Our girls played well against a team likely better than any they will face in League VIII. The first game is not about having timing and sharpness–that will come back with game experience–it is more about heart and a desire to compete, something our girls displayed today. They put more shots on goal than the Cougars (9-7), played through several tough calls, and won the respect of a Class AA squad. This is a team that can set its sights high this year. We have great individual talent and the more that comes together into a solid unit, the more dangerous our squad becomes.

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