Whatever could go wrong has gone wrong in the last five minutes of games for East Meadow’s girls’ soccer team, which suffered its fourth one-goal defeat of September last Friday, 3-2, to visiting Conference AA-I rival Calhoun.
Junior Jessica Foley’s shot from about 25 yards out snuck just under the crossbar with 2:22 remaining to win it for the Lady Colts (3-1-1.) It was Foley’s second goal of the day and came off a feed from junior Cecilia Miguel. The Lady Jets (0-5) twice battled back from a one-goal deficit to tie but once again had some misfortune in crunch time.
“It’s tough, but we’ve got to keep our heads up,” East Meadow coach Adam Hananel said. “We’ve got a pretty young team and we’re right there. We just have to put together a full 80 minutes.”
Two days after allowing a pair of late goals in a 3-2 loss to Mepham, the Lady Jets went toe-to-toe with a Calhoun team that reached the Nassau Class AA title game last fall and brought back many of its main contributors. Foley, fellow juniors Taylor Sipos and Kayla Cappuzzo, and senior Michelle Iacono had the pressure gauge on high throughout the second half, and it was the third straight game the offense managed at least three goals.
“We know they’re a hungry team that’s better than the record shows,” Lady Colts coach Lori Biscardi said. “They came back on us twice, but we hung in there and kept knocking on the door. We created a lot of scoring opportunities and I’m glad we’re leaving with a win.”
Both goalkeepers — Calhoun senior Alissa Battaglia, a fourth-year starter, and East Meadow junior Lindsey Hoffman — made six saves.
Foley put the visitors on the board 8:14 into the first half, but the lead was short-lived. Sophomore Toula DeLeon and senior Jenna Borresen hooked up for a picture-perfect goal a little less than three minutes later. DeLeon sent a high crossing pass into the box and Borresen soared above a crowd in the crease and headed it in for a 1-1 tie.
It stayed that way until 33:36 remained in the second half when Iacono scored her team-leading fifth goal of the season in odd fashion. Her corner kick clanged off the far post and caromed into the net for a 2-1 lead. “It’s not how we drew it up,” said Biscardi, “but Michelle has such a strong kick and something like that is always possible.”
East Meadow re-tied it with 17 minutes left on a blast by senior Jaclyn Tortora from just inside the box, but despite some huge saves by Hoffman it couldn’t avoid another tough finish.