It didn’t take long for members of the Northport girls lacrosse team to believe in themselves.
The Tigers struck early and often on Saturday at Adelphi, winning the first seven draws and scoring the first seven goals en route to the program’s first Long Island Class A championship since 2011 in a 15-4 win over Farmingdale.
Danielle Pavinelli had five goals and one assist and was integral on the draw circle, where Northport won 16 of the 18 draws she took. Olivia Carner added four goals.
“Right away, right when we got those goals in, we were like, ‘This is it. We can do this,’” Carner said. “We all believed in ourselves, and we were great.”
Northport (19-1), which advances to play Pittsford on Friday at 11 a.m. in the state semifinals at SUNY Cortland, scored four goals in the first four minutes. Pavinelli followed with two free position goals before assisting Kaylie Mackiewicz for a 7-0 lead with 16:34 remaining in the first half.
Dominating possession helped keep Farmingdale in check as the Dalers didn’t attempt their first shot of the game until there was 12:40 left in the opening half. When Northport goalkeeper Claire Morris was challenged, she often stepped up. The senior made five saves.
The loss ends the Cinderella story of Farmingdale, which became the first Nassau Conference II team to win Nassau Class A since the county moved to power-ranked conferences in six of the last seven years, according to coach Tracy Wiener.
Amanda Stoll’s free position got Farmingdale (14-3) on the board, but Carner answered a few minutes later for an 8-1 Northport lead. Ahead 9-2 at halftime, Northport increased the lead and initiated the running clock when Pavinelli scored with 7:03 remaining for a 13-3 lead.
Despite struggling early, Farmingdale goalkeeper Reilly Agres recovered to make 11 saves, preventing the game from getting more out of hand.
Pavinelli said starting the fast was key.
“We wanted to come out strong and just put them down right in the beginning and get a big lead,” the junior midfielder said.
Pavinelli’s draw prowess was just the spark Northport needed to get rolling. She was able to self-draw with ease, though she also pushed and pulled to Carner and Ella Cabrera on the circle, who fought for each ball once it hit the turf.
“Me and Pav have been playing sports together for so long, and we basically have like a chemistry,” Carner said. “We’re always able to find each other.”
With the state semifinals approaching, Northport will need more than just Carner and Pavinelli. Luckily for the Tigers, Kate McLam and Mackiewicz each contributed two goals against Farmingdale, helping usher the team back to Cortland.
Said Carner: “We haven’t been upstate in eight years, so now that we’re up there, we have to show everyone who we are.”