There is no better way for a Scarsdale team to shake off a six-game losing streak than to do it against longtime all-sport rival Mamaroneck.
The girls lacrosse team did just that with a 10-9 victory on Tuesday, bringing the team to 3-7 with five games left to play in the regular season.
“I think it just made us all super happy, especially since Mamo is our biggest rival,” senior Mia Dell’Orto said. “We all turned on the energy and we were all excited. Yesterday’s game is the turning point for the season.”
The Raiders led 10-6 after senior Sophia Franco scored her lone goal of the game with just under 10 minutes left to play. Mamaroneck went on a 3-0 run to end the game, but freshman goalie Angela Hoey and the defense made some big stops down the stretch to keep the game in Scarsdale’s favor.
“They had opportunities to win,” coach Art Bonifati said, adding, “We found a way to win.”
After a 2-1 start to the season, not much seemed to go right for the Raiders on or off the field until the Mamo game.
“Angela had a couple of big stops the last two minutes of the game,” Bonifati said. “She came up big. The big save was off an 8-meter which would have tied the game. They got possession again with 3 seconds to go and Angela knocked the pass down.”
Senior Sam Felder also stepped up throughout the game.
“Sam Felder did a really nice job,” Bonifati said. “We played zone against them in the first half and I was stupid and I should have gone back to it in the second half. She played very well.”
Navigating the Mamaroneck run wasn’t easy, but the Raiders survived the test.
“It was definitely a little nerve-wracking at the end, but I had faith the whole time that we were going to win at the end,” Dell’Orto said. “We were all a little nervous, but we all found the intensity. Everyone was there to win.”
Offensively senior Chessy Greenwald led the team with four goals, while junior Maddie Amoriello had three.
“Chessy did a really nice job on offense and got us possessions when we needed it,” Bonifati said. “Maddie has been consistent. She’s been our consistent player for the whole year. She gets two or three goals a game and she’s the quiet one. She doesn’t do anything spectacular. She just gets it done. She’s not fancy, she’s not flashy — she just puts the ball in the back of the net.”
Seniors Lena Glickman and Dell’Orto also scored clutch goals for the Raiders.
“Their skill ability is fabulous, but they’re not dodgers, they’re finishers, so without Franco they were very limited because Franco is our dodger,” Bonifati said. “She forces the defense to move. When that happens she makes the right pass and those two get open. They find a way to find space and they can both finish.” He added, “Lena had a couple of assists, so her handling the ball helped find a couple of girls.”
Franco back in the lineup following several games out due to injury was key, most notably in the draw circle. “She’s still rusty, but just her being on the field is a force,” Bonifati said.
With a loss to North Rockland and win over Mamo, which had defeated North, if the Raiders top White Plains and New Rochelle they would at the least share the league title and ensure a strong finish heading into sectionals.
“We could end with some momentum going into sectionals,” Bonifati said. “We could be 8-7, which is not a bad thing and it would help us in the seeding. I told them, ‘The ball’s in your court. These are teams we can beat, but you have to come and play with some intensity.’ If we play like we did yesterday and we clean up a couple of mistakes we made we’ll be fine the next five games.”
First-year coach Bonifati felt the team moved away from the team game during the losing streak, reverting back to some of what plagued the team during its tumultuous 2018 season.
With everyone back from the injured list, the Raiders are at full strength once again.
“It’s helpful since we’re playing all these games that will count for our seed for playoffs,” Dell’Orto said. “It’s important for everyone to be at full health and full strength. We definitely need everyone to be part of the team.”
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