(Newburyport) A year ago the Belmont Marauders girls soccer team defeated the Newburyport Clippers, 1-0, in the Division 2 North quarter finals at Belmont.
This time around, with a change of locations, it was the Clippers besting the Marauders, 2-1, at Cherry Hill Field in Newburyport on sunny Tuesday afternoon.
The victory gets Newburyport to the D2 North semifinals with Gloucester on Thursday (7:30PM) at Woburn High School.
The Clippers (15-2-3) picked up their two goals in the first half and had to hold on for dear life in the second half as Belmont (10-7-2) came incredibly close to getting all the way back.
The constant pressure Newburyport attackers put on defenders paid off big-time in the last ten minutes of the first half as two direct kicks (by Hannah Martin) turned into goals.
Maryam Moshrefi drew the penalty that led to Hannah Martin’s direct-kick goal at 30:43. BHS goalie Nina Perrotta had Clippers coming at her as Hannah’s kick took an astro-turf bounce into the net.
Later, Liza Twomey was taken down by Belmont’s Izzy Goldstein for another goal-resulting direct kick by Hannah Martin. This time the BHS goalie got tangled up (What is goalie interference?) with Clipper Liza Twomey and a rebound was left that Kerry Johnson put home at 38:00.
That lead looked safe for the longest time in the second half. Things seemed to change, however, when Maryam Moshrefi inadvertently kicked the BHS goalie in the head. Belmont coach Paul Graham, who had been riding the far side official a good part of the game, was infuriated by the lack of a call. His persistence earned him a yellow card at 25:51 of the forty minute second half.
Three minutes later it was the Marauders’ persistence in the offensive end that turned up something good for them – Aly Leahy got called for a hand ball in the box.
Izzy Goldstein took the resulting penalty kick and beat NHS goalie Lilly Donovan with a shot just inside the right goalpost.
So with 11 ½ minutes left, Belmont only trailed, 2-1, and they pressed in with numbers every time they had the ball in the Newburyport end.
The, “Remember when,” sequence from this game was in the last minute of regulation as Belmont attacked from the right side. I was too far away to name one of the Marauder players involved but I did see Emma Teach rip a direct kick toward the Newburyport goal. A rebound resulted close to the goal, and a second shot from in close went past Lilly Donovan off the far goal post and off to the left with twenty-four seconds left. I saw the final BHS shooter afterwards with her hands on her head in amazement/disappointment that the shot hadn’t gone in. But it hadn’t and time ran out for Belmont.
Carly Brand headed out a near-goal in the first half.
Belmont wore shirts with numbers on both sides and their names on the back of the shirt…..a photographer’s delight. Then there was Pentucket, two days ago, with numbers only on the back.
Ideal weather conditions for November 8th……..temps in the 60’s with hardly a breeze.
(I take my own pictures and write my own commentary. I own any mistake.) All the pictures will enlarge if you click on them.