Gone Fishing: Tottenville reaches girls lax final
Tottenville midfielder Victoria Orlick was witnessing a déjà vu moment on the field as her team took on Beach Channel in the PSAL semifinals.
The senior flashed back to previously heartbreaks in her first two seasons on the varsity. She remembered the Pirates going ahead early in the 2010 championship game, before the Dolphins rallied in the final minute to complete back-to-back lacrosse titles.
The Dolphins had evened the game less than 10 minutes into the second half, but Orlick and her teammates were determined at that point to not allow history to repeat itself.
“We were thinking this is our game, this is our field, they cannot beat us,” Orlick said. “We have to show them what we have. A few years ago they beat us in the championship and we didn’t want this to happen.”
Top-seeded Tottenville would come alive to score four consecutive goals to seal a berth into the PSAL championship Sunday afternoon with a 12-8 victory in Huguenot.
Orlick went on to tally a game-high four goals, with teammate Maria Cacciapuoti adding three to lead Tottenville (14-1), ranked fourth in New York City by MSG Varsity, to an all-Staten Island title match with Curtis at Aviator Sports Complex.
The third-seeded Warriors pulled off a thrilling 15-14, quadruple-overtime victory against No. 2 Midwood at Aviator Thursday night.
“We knew it was going to be rough, but we had our heads in the game,” Orlick said. “We had to be focused.”
Tottenville coach Lenny Hession said his team was going to be in a dogfight against the Dolphins, which came with plenty of confidence against the defending champions after losing 16-15 in double overtime only two weeks ago.
The Pirates got off to fast start, but lost their earlier aggression once Cacciapuoti finished off a wide-open shot to give her team an 8-4 lead with 5:29 left in the first half.
The Dolphins responded twice with goals form Tashawna Reid and Tabitha Rosario with seven seconds left in the first half to cut the lead to 8-6. The Dolphins continued their assault on goalie Rebecca Fishkis in the second half. Melisa Williams scored and midfielder Courtney Gallagher added her second of the day on the restart with 15:47 left to tie the game.
Tottenville responded, thanks to Fishkis, a first-year goalie who robbed Williams on a point-blank shot on a rush to the net with 15:15 left. The Pirates took advantage of the critical save as Orlick wristed a shot past Dolphins goalie Tianna Parkes to make it 9-8 with 14:11 left.
“My first year starting and it’s definitely been a great season,” Fishkis said. “I knew I had to totally step it up. I couldn’t let it get past me.”
Cacciapuoti continued her second half renaissance with two consecutive goals to give the Pirates an 11-8 lead with 8:40 left. Jessica Agostino finished the scoring late in the contest to seal the win.
“When the goalie makes a save, it really lifts the team,” Hession said. “She was struggling up to that point, Fish makes the big save and we go on a little roll. There are key points to every game, and to every season. That could be it for us.”
Beach Channel coach Sam Innes praised his team for keeping it close, but the huge save which led to the Pirates late scoring push was a momentum killer.
“We had the opportunity to take it a lead,” Innes said. “We made adjustments in the second half and were able to make it a game. But we made costly turnovers. Tottenville is a great team and they made the plays.”
The title rematch Sunday will be between two teams who know each other very well. Curtis won 11-9 on April 5, but the Pirates earned a 14-11 win in the regular season finale.
“We’re going to have to stick to our game plan, they have a lot of talented players, probably the best player in the city in Taylor (O’Gara),” Hession said. ”The key will be to control the game and play our game. Power Lacrosse.”