A glance at the scoreboard after 80 minutes of girls soccer didn’t even begin to tell the game’s story.
Despite North Shore and Shoreham-Wading River being scoreless after regulation in the Long Island Class A championship/Southeast regional at Bethpage High School Sunday afternoon, North Shore dominated possession and the game’s pace.
For North Shore’s players, scoring wasn’t a matter of ‘if.’ It was ‘when.’
“It was bound to happen I think any minute,” six-year varsity player Isabella DiBenedetto said, “because we dominated the whole game.”
“We dominated,” fellow six-year player Selena Fortich said. “We were asking for it. It was going to happen.”
And in the 89th minute, with a little more than a minute remaining in the first overtime period, Izzy Glennon sent a ball to the middle of the field, which hit off the goalkeeper and went into the back of the net as North Shore defeated Shoreham-Wading River, 1-0, to advance to the state Class A semifinals against Spencerport at Cortland High School at 10 a.m. Saturday.
“It wasn’t the prettiest shot I’ve ever taken but it was a goal,” Glennon said. “It went in and that’s all that really matters. It put a score on the scoreboard and we’re going home with a smile on our faces.”
North Shore (14-3-2) controlled the possession and outshot Shoreham-Wading River, 23-3. But Lydia Kessel made multiple diving saves for Shoreham-Wading River (18-1-1) to keep her team in the game.
The North Shore backline, featuring Taylor Berry, Patricia Cammarano and Eileen Quinn, with Giuliana Graziosi saving three shots, including back-to-back point-blank saves in the first half, to key the victory as North Shore heads to its first trip to the state semifinal in school history, coach Lauren Gotta said, and she knows it will be a moment the players will always cherish.
“I tell them all the time it’s something that you’ll never, ever forget for the rest of your lives,” Gotta said. “No matter how old you are, you’ll remember being able to go upstate and represent all of Long Island.”
And after spending multiple seasons playing in lower-ranked conferences, the Vikings senior-core is proud of what they’ve been able to accomplish.
“Although we finished first seed this year, we’ve come up from the bottom of Conference II,” Glennon said. “We’ve worked all the way up and we’ve worked so hard to get here and we’re just making North Shore history now.”