Sierra Brophy wasn’t going to let this opportunity slip away.
The leading goal scorer in Nassau Conference AA-I girls soccer had chances throughout Monday’s semifinal matchup, but she couldn’t find the back of the net. In overtime, the Massapequa forward made sure that didn’t happen again.
Brophy took a touch pass from Lia Howard, juked around the charging goalkeeper and scored from 15 yards out with 6:51 remaining in the first overtime period to break a tie at 4 for second-seeded Massapequa in its 5-4 victory over No. 7 Oceanside in a Nassau Class AA quarterfinal at Berner Middle School Monday evening.
“It was a relief,” Brophy said. “I didn’t want to let everyone down, which is what I felt like coming off during regulation,” Brophy said. “But everyone inspired me to play harder.”
Massapequa (13-2) advances to play No. 3 Plainview-Old Bethpage JFK in the semifinals Saturday at 7 p.m. at Cold Spring Harbor High School. Oceanside finishes at 12-1-1.
The Chiefs had to respond after a gut wrenching final 21 minutes of regulation. After Massapequa took a 4-1 lead off a goal from Jessica Lynskey with 26 minutes remaining in the second half, Ashley Ladner scored three goals in the final 21 minutes for Oceanside -- the first two coming on free kicks from 35 and 32 yards. Then, following a yellow card in the 18-yard box, Oceanside received a penalty kick with 4:56 remaining in the second half, which Ladner finished. But Massapequa responded.
“I think at this young age, it’s shocking to their system to be up 4-1 with 20 minutes to go and then have three goals be scored against you on restarts and now all of a sudden you’re tied 4-4,” coach Bruce Stegner said. “It felt to them like they lost the game already, so I think it was incredibly tough for them and I’m proud of them”
Gianna Savella scored Massapequa’s first goal, sending a through ball from Jackie Portogallo to the upper-left corner from 18 yards out to give Massapequa a 1-0 lead with 31:32 left in the opening half.
Exactly two minutes later, Massapequa created another goal with plenty of passing in the offensive end and Emma Cooney striking from 10 yards out to give the Chiefs a 2-0 advantage.
Julie Strianese scored for Oceanside with 20:45 remaining in the first half and Howard headed in a cross from Nicole Romeo with 4:20 remaining in the first half, as Massapequa took a 3-1 lead into halftime. Then the Sailors’ resurgence started.
“Not going to lie, there was a lot going through our head,” Cooney said. “Emotions were boiling, we were all on the fence about it but we had trust in each other and I knew we could do it. We’ve been in these situations before and I knew we were going to come out on top.”