Mupo nets OT winner to give Rocky Point girls title
It took 52 minutes for Rocky Point to grab a lead in last night’s Suffolk Class B girls lacrosse championship game. But the final four minutes, when Rocky Point led, erased a year of bad memories.
With 2.5 seconds left in regulation Alexa Anzalone scored from Tracey Wandle to force overtime. Two minutes into overtime Kara Mupo put one in and No. 1 Rocky Point held on for a 9-8 victory over third-seeded Hauppauge at Dowling.
The late goals gave Rocky Point (18-1) its fifth championship in six years and put to rest the ghosts of last season’s one-goal finals loss to Sayville. Rocky Point meets Garden City in the Long Island Class B championship game, Sunday at 2:30 at Dowling.
“I wasn’t going to leave Rocky Point without another championship,” said Mupo, who will play at Northwestern next season.
Rocky Point struggled early with double teams from Hauppauge’s defenders. Hauppauge (15-3) led 6-3 and 8-5 thanks to three goals from Samantha Losco and strong play by the defense and goalie Jessica Venturino. RP trailed at halftime for the first time this season.
“They played great,” Anzalone said. “They gave us a run for our money.”
Added Mupo “We came in a little nervous after what happened last year.”
History looked like it might repeat itself until Jessica Hasset scored at 2:24 and 1:24 to put RP within one. After several late scoring chance, the Eagles finally broke through when Wandle, who might have had a shot of her own, fed Anzalone for the equalizer.
“[Wandle] just found me in front of the net,” Anzalone said. “I thought there were 10 seconds left.”
Mupo scored the game-winner on a diving shot with 41 seconds remaining in the first overtime. Julie Nolan made two big saves down the stretch to preserve it.
After the game Rocky Point’s players sang a happy 29th birthday to coach Dan Spallina. The gesture was unnecessary, they had already given him a gift by helping him forget 2009.
“I feel like we accomplished something bigger than a county championship today,” Spallina said.