Joely Caramelli #3 of Massapequa, left, gets pressured by Ashlinn...

Joely Caramelli #3 of Massapequa, left, gets pressured by Ashlinn Kelly #1 of Farmingdale during the Nassau Class A girls lacrosse final at Adelphi University on Wednesday, May 31, 2023. Credit: James Escher

The players on the Massapequa girls lacrosse team don’t have to look any further than the person next to them for inspiration. After entering the season off back-to-back Nassau Class A crowns, this year’s team wanted to continue on that upward trajectory. They want to win for one another, as well as themselves, and it shows.

“My teammates and I, we all light fires under each other,” said Joely Caramelli, a senior midfielder. “So in times like these, you just need to step up and everyone did that at some point today.”

And that doesn’t always portray itself via goals. It could be a ground ball, draw control, caused turnover, assist, save or simply being in the right place on defense. Top-seeded Massapequa displayed that throughout its 11-6 victory over No. 3 Farmingdale in the girls lacrosse Nassau Class A championship at Adelphi on Wednesday evening. 

Massapequa (10-5) advances to play Northport (17-2) in the Long Island Class A championship/Southeast Regional Final at Adelphi Sunday at 4 p.m. It’s the third straight year Northport and Massapequa meet in this matchup. Northport won the last two. 

Jessica Giller had four goals to lead Massapequa, including firing in a free-position goal to give Massapequa a 9-6 lead with 12:06 left in the second half. Her goal started a 3-0 run to close the final for Massapequa.

“Like Joely said, we light fires under each other and I knew I had to do it for my team,” Giller said. “And obviously I was going to do my best and I did.”

Farmingdale (11-8) scored three of the final four goals in the first half to cut Massapequa’s lead to 6-5 at halftime. Caramelli and Caitlyn Dorman scored free-position goals in the first six minutes of the second half to regain control for Massapequa.

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“We knew they were going to come out strong,” Caramelli said. “They wanted to win just as much as we did but we came out stronger and that’s all that matters.”

Carly Livingston and Juliann Brzeski each scored two goals for Farmingdale.

Allison Petrullo had two goals and an assist, Ashley Melillo had three assists, Ellen Leisen added two goals and Caramelli had two goals, two caused turnovers and 12 ground balls to help Massapequa win its sixth Nassau Class A title in the last seven seasons. Massapequa, which returns nine starters from last year, looks to avenge an 11-10 double-overtime loss to Northport.

“These girls work hard every day and every year and the heartbreak we had last year has just been driving us as a team from the second that game ended,” coach Erin Kollar said. “They’ve been working hard and looking forward to getting back there.”

That double-overtime loss has lingered with Massapequa ever since last June.

“After last year we obviously want that revenge,” Giller said. “So we’re going to work the next couple days and if we work, we can do anything we want.”

“We’ve been here twice now, two years back-to-back, and we fell just short,” Caramelli said. “But this year we’re not going to do that. We’re going to come out strong, play two strong halves of lacrosse and come out with the Long Island championship.”

Kollar said Massapequa expected to cross paths with Northport again this year. With nine returning starters, Kollar hopes that experience will lead to a new result. 

“Third year in the Long Island championship game, third year against Northport,” Kollar said, “things like that have a funny way of working out the third time.”

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