Bayport-Blue Point already had stalled for more than five precious minutes late in the fourth quarter, clinging to a two-goal lead. The Phantoms were going to be very picky about their next shot.
“We’ve been on the other side of stall ball,” Bayport-Blue Point coach Ryan Gick said. “We planned to run the clock, but we wanted to make them extend and then expose them.”
That opportunity came when Maddigan Miller had the ball behind the Mount Sinai cage. “My cousin Maddie,” Ailish Kelly said with a wide grin. “I knew they’d double her so I cut to the net. Coach said if we had the shot, put it home. I faked high and shot low.”
Bull’s-eye! Kelly’s goal on the feed from Miller with 4:24 left proved to be the game-winner as host Bayport-Blue Point held off previously unbeaten Mount Sinai, 8-7, in a crucial Suffolk II girls lacrosse game of Class C contenders on Friday.
Cassidy Weeks had two goals and an assist to lead the Phantoms (7-1). Meaghan Tyrrell had two goals and two assists for the Mustangs (5-1), who fell behind 6-0 late in the first half before rallying to turn an apparent blowout into a genuine thriller.
“We moved the ball well in the first half,” Gick said. “When you get a big lead, the clock can be your friend, but I thought we got a little stagnant on offense in the second half.”
Tyrrell scored a goal and set up two others as Mount Sinai cut the deficit to 6-3 just three minutes into the second half. After Courtney Weeks, Cassidy’s twin, netted her second goal to make it 7-3, the Mustangs’ Tyrrell and Meaghan Scutaro both scored within 98 seconds to make it 7-5 with 11:07 left.
After gaining possession off the ensuing draw, Bayport-Blue Point called timeout with 9:17 left and Gick put his team in a semi-stall. But even after Kelly’s goal, Mount Sinai still was kicking. Gabriella Saratori and Jennifer Markey scored 27 seconds apart to make it a one-goal game.
When Courtney Weeks stepped up for the draw control, her twin was ready. “She usually puts it where I can get it,” Cassidy Weeks said. “But I had to check it out of their player’s stick. I knew how important that possession was.”
The Phantoms did turn it over with 48 seconds left, but their defense delivered when Maggie Clark’s stick check prevented Tyrrell from getting off a shot in the final seconds.
“We hadn’t played our best game yet,” Kelly said. “Today I think we did.”