Brito leads Forest Hills over Arts & Business
Jackelin Brito couldn’t have gotten off to a better start to the PSAL campaign when she scored all four goals in a win over Townsend Harris
The junior forward then encountered a rough game Tuesday, missing a few good scoring opportunities in a one-goal loss to Long Island City.
Brito wasn’t about to pass up an early opportunity to find the net in the first half against Arts and Business on Thursday. She scored in the eighth minute, igniting Forest Hills to three first-half goals en route to a 4-1 win in a PSAL Queens A-V division game held in Flushing Meadows Park.
It was a good bounce back win for Forest Hills (2-1-0), which received goals from Elizabeth DiBartolo, Lina Dominguez, and a penalty kick late in the second half by Natalia Cayado.
“After that first goal goes in, it kicks off all of the confidence in the whole team and it elevated us and we got our game on,” Brito said. “The last game was just miscommunication and missed goals. We came together, we did the job. We shot on the goal and got the shots on the goalie.”
Brito used her speed on the left side to get past two defenders and crossed the ball to a wide-open DiBartolo in front of the net for a 10th minute-goal to put Forest Hills up 2-0.
Forest Hills kept the pressure coming on a young Arts and Business defense. Dominguez curved a 22-yard free kick through the fingertips of goalkeeper Stephany Lopez for a 24th minute-goal to extend the Lady Rangers lead to 3-0.
Brito is a confident player who is now completely 100 percent healthy. While playing with her club team in the spring, she twisted her right knee when she collided with a goalie.
While she waited to get clearance to play, Brito improved her conditioning, and learned the tricks of the goal-scoring trade in various camps throughout the summer. She returned for Forest Hills first practice last month ready to go, according to longtime coach Bob Sprance.
“Today you can see what she does. She’s not afraid to shoot,” Sprance said. “She’s a terrific, complete player. She’s 100 percent back. She’s really back to her old form.”
Youth is the big story at Arts and Business (0-1-1), which starts five freshmen this season. Bulls coach Keith Moran sat a few starters for disciplinary reasons, but he saw a better effort in the second half with senior Lizzett Heras scoring on a long 40-yard kick to cut the deficit to 3-1 in the 71st minute.
“We got the goal, and a few close shots on net, but we only got about five shots on net,” Moran said. “We need to produce more of that as a team.”
After finishing 7-3-2 last season, Forest Hills is an older and a confident group whose intent is to make a push at competing against defending division champions Long Island City.
Cayado, who scored on a penalty kick in the 78th minute, is the team’s best defender at sweeper. Dominguez, and co-captain Manuela Garcia provide experience in the midfield and an influx of new starters are vying for big minutes. The team’s starting stopper, Karina Chapa, did an effective job starting at goalkeeper for the injured Caitlin Daly.
“Half the team is veterans from last year, and the other half are starters who came off the bench,” Sprance said. “It’s now their time. The immediate goal to make the playoffs, then win the division and get as far as we can in the playoffs”