By Bill Landon
Kings Park was spreading the wealth on senior night — something that especially pleased senior Jessica Hoyt.
“I’ve been playing with these girls since the seventh grade and not all the seniors play that much,” she said. “So it was great to see them get playing time and a bunch of them scored, who usually don’t, so it was just a really nice day.”
Four girls, two seniors, found the back of the net in the Kingsmens’ 5-0 shutout of East Hampton Oct. 16. The win was especially sweet for those upperclassmen playing in their last home game of the regular season.
“To win on senior night was amazing — I don’t get a lot of playing time, but to win tonight, our season just got even better,” senior defender Zoe Dougherty said.
The game against Hampton Bays though was not what she or any of her teammates expected. Even though the Bonackers are 0-13 on the season, they brought their A game.
“They were not what I expected,” Dougherty said. “Being in last place without a win they pressed us in the first half, holding us to just one goal.”
Kings Park scored in the 28th minute, when Hoyt drilled a Sam Hogan cross pass into the netting to break the ice.
Hogan, a junior, beat out a defender for an open look at the goal two minutes into the second have, and sent her shot into the upper left corner. She scored a solo shot later in the half for a 3-0 advantage.
“We played them once before, so we knew they’d be tough — they don’t ever give up; they swarm to the ball and they play really hard,” Kings Park head coach Bryan LoPalo said. “They played better than their record indicates. [This is] an extremely tough league.”
With senior bench players swapped in for starters, junior Amelia Galdorisi and senior Mary Tuorto also found their way to the scoreboard. Kings Park ends the regular season at 11-3-2 overall with an 11-2-1 mark in League V. The girls soccer playoffs begin with outbracket games Saturday Oct. 21. The first round starts Tuesday Oct. 23.
“That was unexpected, [it was] a little different game they played, but absolutely they challenged us,” Tuorto said comparing the two matchups between the teams. “I was shocked at how our seniors came together. We don’t normally all play together on the field. Tonight it was so important to win this game.”