LYNNFIELD — As the curtains came to a close on another girls soccer regular season, both Marblehead (8-8-1) and Lynnfield (14-2-2) looked to end it on the right foot – no pun intended – heading into the state tournament.
In a matchup Lynnfield coach Mark Vermont described as having “tournament-like atmosphere,” his Lady Pioneers got the job done, 3-1, on Thursday, Oct. 26.
Better yet, the tough competition will help Lynnfield come postseason, according to Vermont.
“Marblehead is such a strong team and we want to play strong teams. So, to end the regular season with a win gives us a good feeling going into the tournament,” he said.
Bella Carroll scored her 20th goal of the season just four minutes in off a beautiful cross from Hannah Ozanian (1-0). Five minutes later, freshman Pioneer Giada Antidormi scored her first varsity goal with a snipe from nearly 30 yards out to give her side a 2-0 cushion.
After a timeout and formation change from Magicians’ coach Lisa Wales, Marblehead put itself right back in it with 24 minutes remaining in the half. Sadie Halpern put one away on the doorstep to cut the lead in half, 2-1.
Unfortunately for Marblehead, its momentum was short-lived as the first-half tally was all the Magicians got.
Marblehead kept its pressure up, however, and even had a point-blank scoring chance with 23 minutes remaining in the game, but a diving stop from Lynnfield goalkeeper Ava Gamache took the opportunity away.
“She’s trained so hard,” said Vermont, raving about Gamache’s performance in net. “I’m glad for her to get that [save].”
Lynnfield found its dagger with 10 minutes remaining as Megan Woods finished off a cross from Catie Kampersal, solidifying a 3-1 lead – and victory – for the hosts.
Even after the loss, Wales was happy to see her team’s second-half performance.
“I thought in the second half, truthfully, we outplayed them,” Wales said. “[Lynnfield] is a physical team and they definitely did what they had to do.”
With brackets being released Wednesday, No. 22 Marblehead visits No. 11 Westborough in the first round of the MIAA Division II state tournament (day and time too late to print).