Nicole Chimienti sensed this was the opportunity. After Bay Shore erased a two-goal deficit, the Marauders were one kick away from completing the comeback.
And without allowing much time to think, Chimienti stepped to the ball after Lexi Grassia forced a free kick from 25 yards out on the right side of the field in overtime. Chimienti, leaving only a few seconds between the foul whistle and her ensuing kick, sent the ball to the upper far post, past the diving Whitman goalkeeper, to give Bay Shore the lead with 5:49 remaining in the first overtime — a lead the Marauders held on to for a 4-3 road victory in Suffolk II girls soccer on Tuesday.
“I was like ‘I need to get this in,’” Chimienti said, “because if I don’t get this in, then it’s going to stay 3-3 and we’re going to tie or lose and I was like ‘This is not happening.’”
Bay Shore (3-2-1) forced overtime after Talani Barnett led a charge down the left side of the field. Barnett, an Ohio State commit, planted her foot for the cross and Hannah LaForce was the first to the ball in the box. She wasn’t able to score, but Keonjah Nugent was there for the rebound to tie the score at 3 with 4:32 remaining in regulation.
“Hannah was trying to put it in and it just went off the goalie and I was like ‘Free ball, I’m just going to put that one in,’” Nugent said. “It felt really good because it was a huge game.”
Whitman (3-2-1) scored the first two goals, the initial one coming from Gianna LaMay, who made a nice hustle play in the box to corral a rebound. Alexa DelColle sent a corner kick into the box, which Meagan O’Donnell headed in to give Whitman a 2-0 lead less than 20 minutes into the match.
Barnett responded for Bay Shore, firing a shot from 35 yards out off her left foot to the top of the net to make the score 2-1. Rebecca DeWitt’s goal made it 3-1 for Whitman before the half.
But Bay Shore never felt it was out of the match. Fatou Barry cut the deficit to 3-2 with a shot from 30 yards out that hit the crossbar before bouncing in with 16:55 remaining in the game.
“I think it says that we don’t give up,” Chimienti said, “and we have a lot of heart . . . this was an important game for us to win.”