Here is my story on Lakeland/Panas coming back to earn a draw against White Plains
VIDEO: White Plains’ Kelsey Fee makes save in the final minute of play to secure the tie.
VIDEO: Lakeland/Panas’ Molly Fitzpatrick talks about coming back to earn a tie
WHITE PLAINS The end result of Wednesday’s game between Lakeland/Panas and White Plains might have been a draw, but it certainly felt like the Rebels came out on top.
Lakeland/Panas overcame a four-goal deficit in the second half to secure a 7-7 tie at the home of the Tigers.
“Our team had enough heart and hustle that we said we weren’t going to come out of this game with a loss,” said Rebels junior attack Molly Fitzpatrick, who led Lakeland/Panas with four goals. “We weren’t coming out of here without a win or a tie.”
Thanks in large part to Kate Leone (three goals) and Shannon Lynch (three goals), White Plains (3-0-2) built a 6-2 lead with 21:13 remaining in the game. Led by Fitzpatrick, who scored three goals in the second half, the Rebels (7-0-1) went on a four-goal run to tie the game at 6-6 with 8:06 remaining.
“Our kids keep playing,” Lakeland/Panas coach Sharon Sarsen said. “Our defense played very well today. They came up with some turnovers and they were able to capitalize in transition. That gave us a little confidence and got us back in the game”
Leone put the Tigers back ahead, 7-6, with 5:41 remaining. White Plains had possession in the final five minutes, but turned the ball over following a timeout at the 3:24 mark. The Rebels took advantage, as Katie Bradbury (two goals) scored the equalizer with 1:47 remaining.
Lakeland/Panas won the draw and had a chance at a game winner, but Kelsey Fee (four saves) made a big save with 20 seconds remaining.
“A lot of games like this last year we ended up losing, because in the end we couldn’t pull it out,” Fitzpatrick said. “I think we have enough experience now that in the end of the game we are comfortable making plays.”
It’s the second tie for the Tigers against an elite Section 1 program in the past week, showing the growth of the program. On Thursday, White Plains played visiting Yorktown to an 8-8 draw.
“It’s very satisfying to see them work so hard and see some good results from it,” White Plains coach Mike Leone said. “It’s a step in the right direction.”
Sarsen is cautiously optimistic about the success of her team so far.
“This year, we have a lot of upside,” Sarsen said. “We just have to figure things out and get more consistent. I really like where we can go. I just hope we can get there quick.”
Photo courtesy of Frank A. Becerra/The Journal News.