By Perry L. Novak
Holland Patent – While most athletes dislike road games compared to home contests. Whitesboro forward Sydney Scaccia would not agree when it comes to playing field hockey at Holland Patent. For the second straight year, the junior scored a decisive goal in the Tri-Valley League affair between the neighboring rivals, this time keying a 1-0 victory.
“Last year I scored the tying goal with seven seconds left,” Sydney Scaccia said with a big smile after the September 14 game ended. “It felt good. I was excited.”
Danielle Fanelli set up the game’s lone score with a perfect pass near midfield. Sydney Scaccia dodged a defender upon getting the pass, moved quickly into the circle then fired a shot past HP goalie Joelle Freiermuth with11:44 to play in the second half.
“In the TVL, all the games are battles,” Whitesboro coach Renee Lavalley said. “In the first half we were being more reactive. In the second we were being more proactive.” There was plenty of activity throughout the 60-minute affair which was played in perfect conditions. The trouble was in generating offense. Both teams had just two shots for the game.
HP created some of its best scoring chances in the final minutes, but both times Whitesboro (1-1, 2-2) players defended well to protect the lead.
A penalty corner in the 56th minute saw Madeline Mahanna sending a pass to Taylor Oliver just inside the top of the circle. The junior’s shot went just wide, but the Golden Knights (1-1, 1-2) kept Whitesboro bottled up on defense then created another great chance in the middle in the 59th minute. Lauren Lapertosa and Carlie Chevrier teamed to clear the ball for Lavalley’s team.
Seconds later Lexi Scaccia and Claire Wiley did likewise to keep the lead 1-0 for the visitors, and that led to the disputed ending.
HP earned a penalty corner with time winding down. Mahanna passed the ball in with six seconds to play and play was whistled moments later. HP coach Renee Morrison felt her team should have been able to finish the corner since the ball never cleared the circle, but the official explained since the corner play started while there was still time on the clock the game was over.
The game started in opposite fashion as Whitesboro had two penalty corners in the early minutes. Freiermuth made one of her saves on the first try then Lapertosa’s redirection of a pass from Kaley Brindisi went wide for Whitesboro. HP had a series of corners in the middle of the first half, but the Whitesboro defense held firm. Chevreir had one of the better clears during the stretch for Lavalley’s team then in the 23rd minute Whitesboro goalie Breanna Langett made a save on a shot by HP’s McKenna Williams. The hosts had two more corners in the final seconds of the opening half only to see Fanelli clearing the best chance.
“It was a well played game by both teams,” Morrison said. “We needed to find urgency in the game earlier.”
Freiermuth had one save, Langett two. HP had a 10-3 edge in corners.
Whitesboro (1-1, 2-2): Sydney Scaccia 1-0, Danielle Fanelli 0-1. Saves – Breanna Langett 2.
HP (1-1, 1-2): Saves – Joelle Freiermuth 1.