Freehold Township rallies past Manalapan
After falling to Manalapan in the state playoffs last season, Freehold Township used revenge as its rally cry. It turned out, such emotion aided the Patriots' cause in the latest matchup between Shore Conference rivals.
Nicole Koretsky scored with 8:59 remaining to snap a tie and help Freehold Township escape with a 3-2 victory over Manalapan in girls soccer action on Monday afternoon.
The highly anticipated contest, which was live-streamed exclusively on MSGVarsity.com, saw the Patriots erase a one-goal deficit in the second half and, in turn, extend their winning streak to seven games.
"Every year it's back and forth with them," said Maryland-bound senior Gabby Galanti, who notched an assist. "Last year they beat us in the playoffs, so we owed them one."
It’s no wonder the Freehold Township program has enjoyed such astounding success in the early going, because its defensive unit has been nothing short of spectacular. The Patriots had not given up a goal since a 4-1 win over Brick Memorial on September 19.
"All season we've learned to play together," Galanti said. "It doesn't matter who scores goals or gets assists."
Recent trends of clamping down defensively on opponents changed in this one, though.
After Christina Camassa, a Villanova recruit, opened the scoring in the 20th minute to give the Patriots a 1-0 lead, Manalapan fired back with two goals by Catherine Traina five minutes apart early in the second half.
The tallies in the 47th and 52nd minutes, respectively, put Manalapan in place to snap its three-game losing streak.
However, Marisa DeMonte evened the game in the 66th minute for Freehold Township. Soon thereafter, Koretsky came through with her heroic shot that sealed the win.
"All seson we've been talking about states and the Shore Conference titles," Galanti said. "It's what we're playing for."
Contact Brian Fitzsimmons at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter: @FitzWriter