Despite having to make a lengthy trip to Cape Cod, the Saugus High School girls’ soccer team found a way to overcome potential travel fatigue and pull off a come-from-behind, 2-1 victory over the Sandwich Blue Knights last Thursday in the preliminary round of the Div. 3 playoffs. The Sachems, who were awarded the 33rd seed in a 44-team statewide field, fell behind 1-0 in the first half. But two goals in the final 20 minutes of the game catapulted Saugus to the next round, where they faced the top-seeded Norwell Clippers.
In last Saturday’s first-round matchup with the Clippers, Saugus fell behind 3-0 after one half. The Sachems gave a better account of themselves in period two (giving up just one score) but came up short by a 4-0 count. Saugus finished the season with an 11-9 overall mark and a postseason win on the resume.
In the win over 32nd seed Sandwich, Shawn Sewell scored the game-winner for Saugus with about five minutes remaining. She got free behind the defense and whistled a shot past the reach of Sandwich goalie Abi Kinney. From there, the Sachems were able to shut down any attempt by the Blue Knights to even the contest. The Sachems pretty much carried the play in the second half and, still trailing by a goal, were finally able to put one in the net with less than 20 minutes left in regulation. Maddie Goyetche struck paydirt when she drilled a direct kick that landed just under the crossbar to even the contest with approximately 17 minutes on the clock. Twelve minutes later, Sewell would put home the game-winner. The Saugus players mobbed each other after the final horn sounded.
Saugus goalie Felicia Reppucci had a solid game in net – her lone blemish coming when Sandwich’s Lily Hofmann beat her at the 25-minute mark of the first half to give the hosts the lead. In all, it was a strong team effort for Saugus both on offense and defense.
Most of Saugus’s 10 regular-season wins this season were of the blowout variety. The Sachems outscored opponents by 39 goals in those games – the only close one being a 2-1 win over Winthrop back on Oct. 1. So it boded well to see the Sachems prevail in a tight, low-scoring game last Thursday.
Senior players departing from this year’s squad are Goyetche, Jordan Morris, Reppucci, Jenna Tennant, Alycia Martinez, Kylie Phillips and Brianna Giardullo.