Two goals late in the first half were enough to send Barrington on its way to its 10th consecutive Mid-Country League championship when the Phyllis beat Prospect 2-1 Wednesday night in the 32nd MSL FA Cup at Barrington Community Field.
The Foals (17-2-0) who entered this competition as the favorites found themselves haunting the match when confusion reigned at the end of it. High odds Hannah McKee took advantage of one of the few chances of the night for the MSL East Champions when she pushed a corner effort off the far post, and in the 28th minute.
“We made a mistake on our end, and they made us pay for it,” admitted Nicole Goasda, who along with teammate, Brock Brown, was named MSL West Player of the Year during the break when, in good tradition, the league honors every player in all conferences from All 12 teams.
“We came in strong, but our efforts faltered a little when we conceded their goal, but our response was what I am most proud of,” Brown added.
The Lady Knights (14-4-1), here for the first time since 2003, put in a valiant 80-minute effort — keeping defensive organization, forcing foals inside, and making sure to reclaim numbers in order to slow down a high-powered attack that’s dangerous when given the chance.
Prospect coach: “We might have been caught in the last minute at the start but Hana’s goal really encouraged us. We kept the track after that first goal (but) in less than two minutes the match turned in their favour,” said Tom Frats.
Student Sarah Sarnovsky settled matters in the 39th minute with a superb shot into the upper right corner after Kaitlyn Taylor’s first attempt hit the crossbar.
Sixty seconds later, Grace Stanito ran freely into a brown corner to lead the eventual winner into the net.
The foals hit the crossbar twice and snagged the post on four other occasions, but the Lady Knights held on, thanks in part to a solid effort from goalkeeper Lily Parish, who kept her club in the game until the final whistle.
“I couldn’t be more proud of this team’s efforts tonight against such a great opponent,” said Frats.
“We’ve only been two games behind this season, so seeing the girls stay focused and cool after the first goal we gave up says a lot about them, and it’s a great lesson to learn moving forward,” said the Velez coach. Ryan Stingren, who has the 11 best league titles of his career.