Leah Iglesias hit the ground hard. But she didn’t stay down for long.
Carle Place’s leading scorer drew a foul, resulting in a yellow card, when she tried to create a scoring chance. She quickly rose to her feet following the foul and lined up, knowing the best way for payback was to strike Cold Spring Harbor where it hurt most — the scoreboard.
Iglesias fired a free kick about three yards outside the 18-yard box on the left side of the field and put the ball into the top-right corner for the game’s lone goal with 9:18 left as No. 3 Carle Place beat top-seeded Cold Spring Harbor, 1-0, in the Nassau Class B girls soccer championship at Bethpage High School Monday night.
“I knew it could have been our only chance and we were tied 0-0, so my team just told me to shoot it and I did,” Iglesias said. “When I let go of the shot, I just saw it dip down and I knew it was going in”
Carle Place (13-3) advances to play Babylon (13-4) in the Long Island Class B championship/Southeast Regional Final at Berner Middle School in Massapequa Saturday at 1:30 p.m. It’s the Frogs’ first county title since 2015 and they have never advanced to the state semifinals in program history.
Neither team created many scoring chances in the opening half, which can be credited to the Carle Place backline of Amanda Leary, Emma Beattie, Erin Leary and Julia Fortunato with Juliana Mosca in net. The Cold Spring Harbor defensive unit of Emma Polo, Lara Strunk, Franny Donohue, Hannah Terry and Anna Spehr with Gracie Kiernan in net limited the opportunities for the Frogs.
Cold Spring Harbor had a great scoring chance on a breakaway midway through the second half after a through ball by Sierra Rosado, but Mosca challenged the shot and made a key save to keep the game scoreless with 25 minutes remaining.
The Seahawks (5-7-3) also had an attacking chance with multiple shots, some blocked and some on goal, ultimately unable to score with 12 minutes left.
“There was not a lot of time on the clock, so I’m the last person back there so if it gets past me, it’s over, so you have to stay composed,” Mosca said. “You have to think you are going to get it because the second you doubt yourself, you’re done”
Iglesias nearly got Carle Place on the scoreboard earlier, firing a free-position kick goal from 32 yards out, but the ball hit off the crossbar with 23 minutes left. She later drew a foul just outside the 18-yard box with 19 minutes remaining, but the Frogs couldn’t score on the possession.
“This is the one team I can say in my 17 years at Carle Place, if we are ever going to be successful and be where we want to be, it’s going To be with this team,” coach Erik Tonner said. “ ... I’m so proud of them.”