LYNN — The hardest loss of the season is always the last one, most notably because it means the state tournament run has come to an end.
Coincidentally, the Masconomet girls soccer team suffered its first and last loss of the season in a 5-0 decision to second seeded Newton North in last night’s Division 1 North semifinals.
Heading into the game, the Chieftains (15-1-5) hadn’t lost a game since falling to the Wildcats in the first round last year.
“I thought our girls fought hard,” said Masco head coach Paula Yanakakis. “We knew they had a couple good players up front and we did our best to slow them down.”
The Chieftains actually had their best scoring opportunity of the game four minutes in after senior captain Kaleigh White shot just wide of Newton North’s net.
“That kind of shocked us a bit, actually,” explained Newton North head coach James Hamblin. “We had spoken about trying to neutralize (White) and stop her from getting on the ball. I think we did a good job marking her, especially after that scare.”
Minutes later Masco freshman keeper Katy Pelletier was injured in a collision after she made save outside her net. She came out of the game and was replaced by sophomore goalie Morgan Whiton.
Whiton, who played most of the year on junior varsity, was called up for tournament play and saw some prime time action as soon as she subbed in.
The Wildcats, who play in the highly competitive Bay State Conference, showed why they’re still undefeated. After Whiton got caught trying to cut down the angle, Newton North striker Shannon Fitzgerald was able to score on the open net to go up 1-0.
Pelletier came back in the game minutes later and finished out the game with five saves under her belt.