Here is my game story on Yorktown’s win over North Rockland.
THIELLS Yorktown girls lacrosse coach Ellen Mager knew she had no reason to worry about goalie Bianca Dente taking over the starting duties this season.
While it was the junior’s first season on varsity, and she was taking over for Katie Frederick, now a freshman playing at Ohio State, Mager had no concerns.
“The fact that she wasn’t on the varsity until she was a junior really didn’t mean she wasn’t going to be an outstanding goalie,” Mager said. “We felt all along she was going to be a good player, and she’s rising to the occasion.”
Dente proved her coach right again Saturday, making key saves down the stretch as Yorktown topped North Rockland 12-9 to hand the Red Raiders’ their first loss of the season.
“I just knew we had to win this game,” said Dente, who finished with seven saves. “The defense really helped me out, so I knew they would help me during what was going on back there. It was very nerve-racking, but I just focused.”
Dente got major help from Emalee Mongno, who scored four goals, including three unanswered in the final 10 minutes of the game to put the Huskers ahead. North Rockland (7-1) entered the game as the only undefeated team in Section 1.
Dente came up with two consecutive saves on 8-meter positions after Emma Kaishian received a yellow card with 4:11 remaining and the Huskers clinging to a 10-9 lead.
Yorktown was in control early, taking a 5-1 lead in the first five minutes. The Red Raiders struggled to gain possession as the Huskers won the first six draws and finished the half having earned 9 of 13 draw controls.
Still, North Rockland trailed only 8-5 heading into the half.
The Red Raiders opened the second half on a tear, going on a 4-0 run to jump out to a 9-8 lead with 12 minutes remaining. North Rockland junior midfielder Kaitlyn Rau (three goals) played a vital role in the run, scoring twice unassisted.
“We pulled the faceguard off a little bit in the second half and maybe that wasn’t smart on our part,” Mager said in regards to the Huskers’ defense against Rau, who has committed to Villanova. “She came through for them in the second half.”
But Mongno stepped up and helped Yorktown (7-1) to its seventh straight win after an opening-day loss to Ward Melville.
“The whole team was working really well together at the time,” Mongno said of the Huskers’ 4-0 run to close the game. “We just realized we had to pull through.”
The road doesn’t get easier for Yorktown, which will face Rye, the reigning Class C sectional champion; John Jay, which played the Huskers to a one-goal game earlier in the season, and perennial powerhouse Lakeland/Panas.
“We’re really clicking,” Mongno said. “Everything is going really well together.”
Photos courtesy of John Meore/The Journal News. For the entire gallery click here.