Junior striker Caitlin Harty was held off the sheet for just the third time in 22 games. She finished a historic season with 50 goals and 11 assists for 61 points. The goals and points are both single-season program records for Beverly, while the goals mark is also a record for The Salem News coverage area (complete records date back to 1997).
Harty netted seven of Beverly’s eight tournament goals.
Her 61 points tie the known area record, equaling the 61 Peabody’s Hayley Dowd scored as a freshman in 2009 on 45 goals and 16 assists.
Franklin’s Kirshe, a senior, scored her 100th career goal in the first half last night. Harty is nearing that mark, with 90 goals and 29 assists for 119 points with a full season still to play.
The next member of Beverly’s 100-point club may well be sophomore Eva Gourdeau. She finished with 15 goals and 19 assists this season and has impressive career totals of 39 goals, 36 assists and 75 points through just two varsity seasons.
Gourdeau has the ability to create her own space off the ball and is able to dance around defenders to generate offense. For a period of last night’s game, Gourdeau was the key to Beverly’s scoring opportunities.
“She always does a good job and knows the game so well,” Simpson said of her sophomore attack. “Eva knows how to create that space and knows what to do when she gets the ball.”
Franklin coach Tom Geysen was also impressed with the sophomore, “That number 16 drove us even more crazy than Harty did at times.”
Beverly’s 18 wins were one shy of the school record of 19 set in 1997. That season, the last for legendary coach Dick Maitland, the Panthers went 19-1-2 while falling in the Division 1 North final.
The Panthers won their first sectional championship this season and also set a program postseason wins record with four.
Local girls soccer teams are now 5-8 in the state semifinals since 1997. Marblehead is 2-0 on that stage, though they lost in the state final in both 1997 and 2002. Danvers (1-3), Hamilton-Wenham (1-0), Bishop Fenwick (0-2) Masconomet (0-2) and Peabody (1-0) are the other local programs that have reached this stage, while Beverly was making its first appearance in a state semi and is now 0-1.