It had become a running joke on the Bay Shore field hockey team, how for as great a playmaker and offensive threat as Sarah Fuchs is, she'd never managed three goals in a game.

Even last year, when she was Suffolk's fifth leading scorer with 23 points, she didn't pull a hat trick.

"She didn't even know what it was until maybe last year," coach Mary Drago said with a snicker. "We'd told her, 'You have to get a hat trick,' and she was like, 'What's that?' She'd score three in scrimmages and I'd tell her it doesn't count; you have to do it in a game."

Well, the joke crossed the finish line on Wednesday when Fuchs got a hatty plus one in a four-goal performance against Babylon in the Marauders' 5-2 win. Fuchs scored the third goal in style, dodging a defender then diving as she launched a shot inside the left post with 12:38 left. She added another with 3:59 remaining.

"After the third goal I came out to get something to drink and that's when I realized it," said Fuchs, who was the first Marauder to record a hat trick in at least nine years. "Coach hugged me and she was really excited - probably because it took me four years."

Fuchs is a dynamic offensive player, so utter unselfishness was likely to blame for it having taken so long. The senior has had several two-goal, two-assist games, and she prefers those.

"It means I'm not the only person scoring," the forward said. "Two assists means I helped my teammates also."

Still, Drago said Fuchs' spark is something Bay Shore (3-2) really needed. "She's a captain," the coach said. "Her getting the ball in the goal gives others confidence."

And what's a feat without a treat? Fuchs celebrated by going out for ice cream. Way out, actually - to Serendipity 3 in Manhattan.

For the cravers of details: it was coffee-flavored and "delicious."

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