Izzy Mangan is used to scoring big goals.
Midway through the second half the junior made a quick cut toward the middle of the field and fired a shot on goal. Instead of hitting the back of the net the ball hit Sacred Heart's Lauren Tierney in the helmet and ricocheted away.
Not to be deterred, Mangan scooped up a loose ball less than 30 seconds later and that time put the ball behind the keeper. It was her third of the game, the eighth for the Friars and the goal that would eventually stand up as the winner as St. Anthony's (15-3) held on to win its seventh consecutive CHSAA AA championship, 8-7, over the Spartans Wednesday night at Hofstra.
"It was a huge goal because we knew we needed to grab the momentum back," Mangan said. "We needed that one more goal to make sure we had it in the bag. It was a big confidence boost because our team was kind of down -- we hit the goalie's stick and posts and we needed that goal."
The game continued with 14:23 left in the first half and St. Anthony's up 4-1 after it was delayed by lightening on Friday night.
The Friars got out to a quick start, scoring two goals in the first five minutes to go up 6-1.
"It was really important because we kind of had them on their heels the other night," coach Summer Ferraro said. "The goals early were absolutely huge."
Kasey Behr was named game MVP with two goals and an assist.
Though Sacred Heart (13-7) crept closer behind four goals from Kathleen Berkery, Friars keeper Charlotte Campbell (11 saves) was able to make enough big stops to make sure the lead stood up. "I really just do anything to keep myself in the zone and fired up," Campbell said.
Three loses could be considered a down year for St. Anthony's but the returning players know this win will give them a boost going into next season.
"Our potential is really great and we can really be a competitor," Mangan said. "Next season we'll be undefeated."