Yorktown Coach Gannon Nets 200th Career Win
By Tony Pinciaro
Yorktown found itself facing a two-goal deficit late in the first half of its Yorktown Tournament first-round game against Sleepy Hollow.
Senior captain Izzy Cicinelli sensed her team needed a lift so she responded with a goal, sending the Cornhuskers into halftime down by one.
Yorktown responded in the second as Cicinelli completed her hat trick, sending the Cornhuskers to a 3-2 victory and, more importantly, gave Coach Bernadette Gannon her 200th varsity victory.
“It meant a lot for us and it was an awesome feeling to get Coach Gannon her 200th win,” Cicinelli said. “She gives a lot to this program and this town. She never gives up on us and always believes that we can do anything we put our minds to. Coach Gannon shows us that field hockey is not just about winning and losing, but about playing a game you love. She cares about each and every player on this team and would do anything for us.”
Gannon, now in her fourth season at Yorktown, began her 25-year career at Suffern and then went to Clarkstown North. She guided Suffern to the Section 1 Class A title in 2011 with an overtime victory over perennial champion, Mamaroneck. Suffern is the only Rockland County team to win a sectional field hockey championship.
“The 200th win is such a special honor that isn’t seen every day,” said Gannon, who is watching her daughter, Kaity, play for Salve Regina field hockey. “It represents 25 teams of players that I have had the privilege to coach. I am so happy that the 200th is with my Yorktown ladies. I have learned that wins are not something to take for granted.”
Cicinelli evened the score midway through the second half, then completed her hat trick with the decisive goal, converting a pass from Kelsey McDonnell.
Yorktown will play Albertus Magnus, which beat Putnam Valley, 1-0, in the final at a date and time to be determined.
Cicinelli felt the late goal in the first half gave the team a momentum boost going into the second half.
“Our overall energy and positivity was the main difference in the second half,” Cicinelli said. “We just kept our momentum up from that goal forward. We kept our heads up and remained focused on our goal, which was to win the game. We knew this game was in our hands and we just had to keep working hard to finish our strong, which we did. It felt great to come back from being down, 2-0, in the start of the game.”
Cicinelli cited McDonnell for making a great pass on the eventual winning goal.
Yorktown is now 1-1 this season. The Cornhuskers opened with a loss to reigning nine-time New York State Class B champion, Lakeland. It would have been easy for Yorktown to hang their collective heads. Instead, Cicinelli said the team used it as a learning experience. Yorktown corrected the mistakes it felt it may have had against Lakeland and continued building on the aspects of the game it played well.
“We knew we couldn’t dwell on the loss,” Cicinelli said. “We had to prepare for Sleepy Hollow and stay focused on winning our next game. I couldn’t be happier with the result. Every single person on the team contributed to the win and it was a great way to bounce back from the Lakeland game, and also a great way to build for the rest of the season.”
Not only did Yorktown want to bounce back from the Lakeland game, it is aiming to regain the title after Albertus Magnus took it from the Cornhuskers last year.
LAKELAND improved to 3-0 this season, manhandling Arlington, 8-0, and Kingston, 7-0.
The Hornets have outscored their opposition, 24-0, this season.
Cara O’Shea registered her first varsity hat trick and Julianna Cappello added two goals and three assists against Arlington. Julia Cummings, Sam Graap and Emma Halderman also scored goals.
Cummings and Cappello each had two goals and one assist against Kingston. Keirra Ettere, Sarah Bussell and Emily Kness completed the goalscoring.
SOMERS did not wait long to give new coach Michelle Armstrong her first victory. The Tuskers received a Rosalie Murphy goal with 10:25 remaining in the game for a 1-0 victory over Pawling in a Somers’ Tournament first-round game.
Emma Kittridge assisted on Murphy’s goal and Nicole Garrity made one save against a Pawling team which is a perennial contender for the Section 1 Class C title.
“The team played very well together and communicated well,” Armstrong said. “It was the girls’ first game so they were excited to play after working hard during the preseason.”
Scarsdale defeated Somers in the title game, 3-1. Tusker Ashley Hershfield scored, assisted by Murphy.
HEN HUD opened 2018 in the Briarcliff Tournament with a 2-1 setback to Valhalla in a first-round game, then dropped a 4-2 verdict to Irvington in the consolation game.
Valhalla led 2-0 at halftime, but Taeghan Dapson closed the gap with the assist to Olivia Freitas.
Hen Hud Coach Melissa Locatelli said her team generated a penalty corner with 19 seconds remaining only to have Valhalla stop it.
“It was a great game played by all,” Locatelli said.
Sydney Muranaka and Logan Gouglemann had the Hen Hud goals against Irvington and goalie Olivia Doorley made 10 saves.
PUTNAM VALLEY faced Albertus Magnus in the first round of the Yorktown Tournament and lost, 1-0, on a goal with 4:45 remaining in the game.
Putnam Valley will play Sleepy Hollow in the consolation game at a time and date to be determined.
“Isabel Healy, a former attack player, made her debut in goal and had four saves,” Putnam Valley Coach Courtney Hyndman said. “Colleen Cassidy and Danielle Cunningham made some huge plays. We have a strong defensive unit, led by captain Sydney Goldberg, who played an awesome game today. We definitely have things to work on, but after not having any scrimmages and this being our first game, I was impressed at how hard they played. You can’t deny their effort and will to win. Magnus scored with 4:45 left in the game so it just goes to show you how close and hard fought this game was.”