The Mineola soccer Lady Mustangs had a season to remember, capturing the Conference VII title. With eight seniors, the Lady Mustangs started the season strong and never looked back.
Having played the first half of their schedule without a loss, the Lady Mustangs would once again face their conference rivals in the second half of the season. With no doubt among the team that their conference rivals would be looking to knock off the conference leader when they meet, the Lady Mustangs would need to step up their intensity in order to finish strong in their conference, and ensure a playoff spot. Here's how they did:
Opening the second half of the season on the road, the Lady Mustangs traveled to Glen Cove HS for an early evening game under the lights. Playing in front of a noisy home crowd, the Lady Mustangs took an early 1-0 lead on a goal by Alyssa Glenn. Keeping the pressure on, Mineola scored their second goal on a shot by Christine Medlock off a pass from Kristen Bubelis. While Glen Cove would answer with a goal of their own to close the score to 2-1, Liz Sanderleaf would score with minutes remaining in the first half to stake Mineola to a 3-1 lead. This score would hold as each team's defense dominated the second half and preserve a 3-1 Mineola win.
Continuing their road trip, the Lady Mustangs next traveled to Westbury HS. Dominating from the opening whistle, Mineola would score three times in the first half on goals by Christine Medlock, Katie Carter and Kristen Bubelis. Breaking the game wide open in the second half , Mineola would score four more times on goals by Kristen Bubelis (her second of the game), Jess Napolitano, Alyssa Glenn and Lauren Massa in a 7-0 route.
With their record now at 7-0-1, the Lady Mustangs came home to face Locust Valley HS. With the forwards swarming in the offensive zone, the Lady Mustangs just could not take advantage of their shooting opportunities as the first half came to a close tied 0-0. The second half opened in much the same manner until Liz Sanderleaf scored with 16 minutes left in the half on a cross pass from Katie Keegan. Such was Mineola offense stymied that Locust Valley's goalie made 26 saves compared to Mineola's 5 saves.
Continuing with home cooking, the Lady Mustangs faced Great Neck North. Mineola moved out to a quick lead by opening the scoring on a goal by Marissa Jetter. They took that lead into the half and held on to it for the first 20 minutes of the second half. Suddenly, and without warning, Great Neck North scored on a breakaway to tie the game at 1-1. Only four minutes later Great Neck North would score once again to take a 2-1 lead and hand the Lady Mustangs their first defeat of the season, 2-1.
With their loss to Locust Valley, Mineola allowed Roslyn to creep within a game back in the standings. Now, in order to hold their lead, the Lady Mustangs desperately needed to get back on the winning track. Traveling to Freeport HS, Mineola would open and close the half with a goal. The Lady Mustangs opened the scoring just five minutes into the first half on a goal by Katie Steen. With just five minutes left in the half the Lady Mustangs increased their lead to 2-0 on a goal by Alyssa Glenn. Alyssa's goal came off a corner kick which curved and backed the Freeport goalie over the goal line. After dominating the first twenty minutes of the second half, Freeport scored off a rebound in front of the net to close the score to 2-1. Sending a clear message that they wanted this game, the Lady Mustangs answered with a goal by Katie Keegan off a Alyssa Glenn corner kick just two minutes later to regain their two goal lead and take the game 3-1.
Coming back home, the Lady Mustangs faced their conference rivals, Roslyn HS. Having played to a 0-0 tie in their first game, Mineola needed a win to determine their own destiny as conference champions and a higher seed in the playoffs. In a tight and intense game, the teams played scoreless to a scoreless tie at the half. Opening the second half and just seven minutes in, Mineola took the lead on a cross pass by Katie Carter, headed-in by Christine Medlock. With just minutes remaining, Roslyn's offense stepped up their offensive intensity, looking to tie the game and force overtime. However, Mineola's defense stepped up their intensity to hold off Roslyn's swarming offense to preserve the 1-0 win. With this win the Lady Mustangs captured the Conference VII title with a ten win, one loss, and one tie record and secured a playoff berth.
Having only a few days to rest and savor their conference title, the Lady Mustangs were seeded number 14 and scheduled to play Island Trees HS, the number 3 seed, at Island Trees HS. On a cloudy and gray day, the Lady Mustangs could muster little in the way of offense. While they held their own in the first half, trailing only 1-0, their second half played much like the weather, cold and gray. Island Trees scored twice in the second half to put Mineola's aspirations of advancing in the playoffs to rest in a 3-0 win.
While their playoff appearance was short and sweet, this team has much to be proud of; a final season record of 10-2-1 put them in the position to capture first place in Conference VII and a first round playoff appearance; a defensive unit, led by goalie Gigi Alas, Jess Antonison, Alyssa Glenn, Lauren Massa, and Jess Napolitano, who gave up only 5 regular season goals; and, five players who received recognition for their athletic and scholastic achievements; Liz Sanderleaf named Class B - All Star, Katie Steen, Alyssa Glenn and Katie Carter named Class B - All Conference, and Jess Napolitano named Class B - Scholar Athlete.
Congratulations to Coach "Weeds", her eight graduating seniors, Katie Keegan, Jess Napolitano, Jess Antonison, Mallory Colonito, Katie Steen, Liz Sanderleaf, Kristen Bubelis, and Nicole Peralta, and the rest of the girl's Varsity Soccer team: Gigi Alas, Lauren Massa, Jenn Port, Alyssa Glenn, Marissa Jetter, Allie Kain, Christine Medlock and Katie Carter.