YORKTOWN Suffern’s Caitlin Leary (pictured below, right) felt no pressure as she prepared for her free position with the game in the balance.
The sophomore attacker scored with nine seconds remaining to give the Mounties a 12-11 win against Yorktown on Wednesday.
“I was nervous, but I kept my calm,” said Leary, who finished with three goals. “I knew that even if I didn’t get the shot my teammates would be there for me defending or there to pass to.”
The goal put the Mounties (12-3) ahead after they squandered a five-goal lead down the stretch. Yorktown (13-2) trailed 11-6 with 15 minutes remaining before making a 5-0 run. Casey Duff scored three of the goals, including one with 1:12 left to tie the score at 11-11.
The Huskers won the draw following Duff’s goal, but turned the ball over in their offensive end. After a Suffern timeout, the Mounties successfully cleared the ball and got it to Leary, who drew a push, giving her a free position to the far right side of the goal.
“We got lucky on that call,” Leary said. “The opportunity was there so we took it.”
Suffern coach John Callanan said he felt Leary gave the Mounties the best chance to regain the lead to close out the game.
“Caitlin’s a genius when it comes to her finishing,” Callanan said. “When we called that timeout we said, ‘Whose stick do we want the ball in? Lets give it to Caitlin.’ ”
After a tight start to the game, Suffern pulled away late in the first half, taking a 9-5 lead with under a minute remaining. Jordan Drab’s third goal of the game with 15 minutes remaining in regulation gave the Mounties an 11-6 lead.
“I think we sometimes let our errors get to us,” said Suffern sophomore Baley Parrott, who scored two goals, including her 100th. “It kind of plays a factor for the rest of the game. Sometimes it kind of weighs down on us during the game.”
Turnovers by the Mounties in the second half allowed the Huskers to get back into the game.
“Yorktown is the kind of team, I mean they’re good enough, if you open the door enough times eventually they’re going to come in,” Callanan said.
With only two juniors on the team and no seniors Callanan said his team showed its youth by allowing the Huskers to come back.
“We lost focus,” Callanan said. “There are tough games to lose. This was a tough game to win because I don’t know if we necessarily deserved it.”
Photos courtesy of Matthew Brown/The Journal News. For the entire gallery click here.