Jaedyn Scarlatos couldn’t believe it when she looked down and saw the ball on her stick.
The Miller Place eighth-grader reacted on instinct, pulling back and taking the shot. It was the best decision she made all day. Scarlatos scored the game-winner with 2:51 left in the second overtime, leading the top-seeded Panthers to a 1-0 victory over No. 3 Harborfields in the Suffolk Class B championship at Patchogue-Medford High School on Tuesday.
It was Miller Place’s second county title in three years.
“I saw it there and I thought, this is a chance to win the game,” Scarlatos said. “I knew we had to get the ball in. “
Although Miller Place eventually connected on the game-winner, Harborfields (11-5) got the initial chances in the second OT, recording a pair of shots in the opening minutes. Meaghan Stoessel stood tall in goal, however, saving both attempts and giving the Panthers a chance to push the offense forward.
“She stepped up huge for us today and really all year,” Miller Place coach Alana LaMorte said of Stoessel, who finished with six saves.
Miller Place (14-3) took advantage of Stoessel’s play, moving upfield and earning a corner with 3:20 on the clock. The Panthers immediately worked in front of the net, but couldn’t find the perfect shot as the ball continued to bounce from stick to stick.
Scarlatos moved into the scrum and said she was simply in the right place at the right time, getting her stick down and finding a few inches of space to net the golden goal.
“I think that was just the right moment,” Scarlatos said. “We knew it could be our last game, so that pushed us.”
Miller Place advances to the Long Island championship Saturday at Berner Middle School, taking on Garden City for the second time in three years. Garden City won the previous matchup in 2016.
“We’re looking to work hard for the rest of the week,” LaMorte said. “We love going to Long Island championships and it’s always a battle, so we’ll be ready.”