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Lily Klimuszko's overtime goal lifts Manhasset to LI Class B field hockey championship

Lily Klimuszko scored the lone goal in overtime

Lily Klimuszko scored the lone goal in overtime in Manhasset's 1-0 victory over Miller Place in the LI Class B championship on Saturday, April 24, 2021. Credit: Steven Ryan

Lily Klimuszko and the Manhasset field hockey team were knocking on the Miller Place door, but there was no answer.

With 6 minutes, 21 seconds left in the 10-minute sudden victory overtime period in the Long Island Class B championship Saturday morning, they broke the door down.

Klimuszko followed a rebound shot that deflected off the goalkeeper's pads and slotted it home to give Manhasset a 1-0 win over Miller Place at Berner Middle School in Massapequa.

"My coach always pulls me aside at practice and tells me to work on specific things. She told me to engrave it in my brain," Klimuszko said. "So, when I got the ball on my stick I was thinking about what coach said. I spun and aimed for the corner, and it went in."

The sophomore also scored the winner on Wednesday to help Manhasset capture the Nassau ‘B’ title.

"It meant 10 times more than it would any other year because this has been such a stressful year," Klimuszko said. "We have had teammates who have had COVID and others who were forced to miss games because of contact tracing."

Manhasset (13-4) controlled possession for most of the game. It earned its first penalty corner with under six minutes to play in the first quarter. Manhasset proceeded to collect two more corners in a two-minute span, but were unable to score as the Panthers defense and goalkeeper Marena Capocci (10 saves) stood tall.

Manhasset continued the pressure in the second quarter and earned six penalty corners within a span of three minutes. The Panthers (12-4) stalwart defense would not let anything through. The closest Manhasset came to opening the scoring was with 6:45 left, as a shot following a corner deflected off the crossbar.

The crowd in attendance was evenly split between Manhasset and Miller Place fans. They rose to their feet when Manhasset earned a penalty corner with no time left on the clock at the end of regulation.

On the untimed play, Ava Balacek inserted the ball for Manhasset but the Panthers and Capocci forced a scoring chance wide and the game headed to overtime.

"This is the highlight of my life. I tried to tell myself savor the moment and soak it all in," Klimuszko said. "It tastes good."

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