MAHOPAC, N.Y— Mahopac senior midfielder Tara Ravoli knew from the start that this would be a pivotal game as the Indians took on Fox Lane on April 15.
“I said at the beginning of the game that this is going to be our biggest win if we won this game and I think that we can all feel that,” Ravoli said. “This is a good win — this isn’t just a win.”
Senior midfielder Ali Korin sealed it with the deciding goal in a 9-8 overtime win after receiving an assist from freshman midfielder Katie McDonough.
Korin circled through the Fox Lane defense before shooting a side-arm low shot through the goalie’s legs for the first overtime victory in Mahopac girls lacrosse history.
“That was definitely a pinnacle of my senior year career,” Korin said. “It felt great, but it obviously started with the whole team. Katie McDonough clearing it up and Emily (O’Shea) with the save. It all stemmed from that.”
Ravoli and junior midfielder Briana Corace scored two goals each.
Mahopac coach Jim Lieto credits his team’s defensive effort in a neck-and-neck battle that was tied six times on Friday afternoon in Mahopac.
“Our defense as a unit kept us around enough,” Lieto said. “To keep a team at eight goals is a great job on the defensive end. The defense as a unit was firing on all cylinders.”
Korin, who scored three goals in the win, also notices the Indian defense coming into form as the season progresses.
“The Lakeland/Panas game was similar to this,” Korin said. “It was a tough kind of game like today. We were winning in the first half, and I feel like our defense slipped in that game. The defense stepped it up today.”
Fox Lane maintained possession with an 8-7 lead, milking the clock in the waning minutes. The tides turned when the Foxes turned the ball over to the Indians with 43 seconds left in the game.
Corace came flying down the field before firing a frozen rope past the goalie, knotting it up at eight with 29 seconds to spare.
Lieto was satisfied that his team went through the new sudden-death overtime experience.
“It’s a learning experience,” Lieto said. “If the girls are not going to live it, then they are not really going to know it. Now this is in our pocket, it’s done.”
In the first three-minute sudden-death, junior goalie Emily O’Shea blocked a penalty-shot from Fox Lane with under 10 seconds left, giving Mahopac yet another chance.
“To be a first-year varsity goalie and for her first time playing sudden-death overtime, I think she came up huge,” Lieto said. “She had a bunch of saves in the first half and then she made the saves that we needed in the second half to keep us going.”
Sophomore midfielder Morgan Kirby and junior attacker Diana Good scored one goal apiece. Junior defenseman Kim Schiera dished an assist in the sweet victory.
“I see us gaining confidence,” Lieto said. “I see new girls really coming into themselves and being able to make plays and not second-guess themselves. They are used to the speed now. We told them yesterday that they are not new varsity players anymore. People aren’t considering themselves a rookie anymore.”
The Indians thumped their rival the Carmel Rams on Wednesday, April 13 by the tune of 12-2 at Carmel. Good tallied three goals, while Korin had two goals and two assists. Vicky Moundroukas (1A) and Corace added two goals, while Gabby Light had a goal and two assists.
“We need to play consistently and not be intimidated,” Lieto said. “Keep gaining that experience. We know that we had a lot of new girls and that girls are stepping up and coming back from injuries now. I hope that this game fuels the fire for the second half. In the second half everything is just going to flow naturally.”
Mahopac travelled to Wappingers on April 20 and will host Somers at 3 p.m. on Monday, April 25.