GOSHEN — After a winless 2022 campaign, the Livingston Manor/Roscoe Lady Wildcats are Section 9 Class D Champs. After posting an undefeated record in the division, the Lady Wildcats met Eldred …
GOSHEN — After a winless 2022 campaign, the Livingston Manor/Roscoe Lady Wildcats are Section 9 Class D Champs. After posting an undefeated record in the division, the Lady Wildcats met Eldred for the third time this season under the lights on Tuesday, defeating their Class D rival 5-1.
It’s a common mantra in the sports world that it’s tough to beat a team three times in one season. It would have been easy for the Lady Wildcats to get complacent, expecting to cruise to victory in the post-season after their recent 5-0 road victory at Eldred.
However, the LM/R unit came out swinging, scoring three first half goals and taking a seemingly-insurmountable lead into the break.
The Lady Wildcats’ offense in the first half was contingent on second-chance opportunities. After Eldred’s goalie would deflect a shot attempt, the Lady Wildcats were there to follow their shots.
Leah Ladenhauf was the first to find paydirt, off an assist by Rebecca Gashinsky with 20:45 remaining in the half.
Gashinsky found the back of the net shortly after, after an Eldred defender collided with the goalkeeper leading to an open look at the net with 17:30 to play. Athena Niforatos assisted on the second goal.
Eldred standout Ksenia Sosnowski received a yellow card with just over six minutes to play after a Livingston Manor defender crossed her path and was tripped up while attempting to take the ball.
Eldred kept the game interesting, pressuring the LM defense throughout the half but were unable to find the back of the goal early.
With just over a minute to play, Alexandra Potosek found the back of the net off an assist by Ladenhauf, and the Lady Wildcats extended their lead to three.
“The first 20 minutes the girls were nervous,” Livingston Manor/Roscoe Coach Maggi Fitzpatrick said. “They held a lot of possession, but once we scored the first goal the girls settled in. We’ve been working on getting into a supportive position, and reading the second ball.”
At halftime, the Lady Yellowjackets retired to the locker room to regroup, while the Lady Wildcats remained on the field, both squads discussing second half adjustments they would need to deploy to win.
The break seemed to kick start Eldred, who continued to make attacks early in the second half. The Lady Yellowjackets were awarded a penalty kick just five minutes into the second half, which Sosnowski would have converted if not for shooting before the whistle. The ball was retrieved from the net and she set up to kick it again, sailing it over the top of the goal as Eldred remained scoreless.
It took another 15 minutes, but with 20:31 remaining, Eldred’s Avery Moscatiello found the back of the net to cut the lead to 3-1.
The momentum appeared to be shifting as the Eldred goal seemed to uplift the Lady Yellowjackets, but after nine more minutes of shifting possession and fruitless runs, Livingston Manor’s Jewel Wright punched in a goal with 11:16 remaining to put the game out of reach.
Then, with just 12 seconds left in the game, Gashinsky had an open look on goal after getting past the Eldred defense and put the icing on the win to make it 5-1.
“I’m happy for Livingston Manor, and we wish them luck going forward,” Eldred Coach Roxanne Doud said. “My girls played with so much heart and I’m very proud of them. They found holes and were persistent all night. We have four seniors that we’re going to miss incredibly.”
Despite their inability to win a game last year, Coach Maggi Fitzpatrick and the Lady Wildcats were confident in their ability going into the season.
“From the beginning of the year we had our sights set on this game,” Coach Fitzpatrick said. “Everything we’ve done was to be a winning team and we are, but we’re not done yet.”
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