CLIFTON PARK – The Shenendehowa girls’ soccer team wanted to end the regular season on a high note heading into the postseason.
The Plainsmen hit all the right notes as five different players scored in a 5-0 Suburban Council win against Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake on Saturday morning.
If there was a flat note during the regular season soccer recital it was the slow start to the one-sided score.
“We had planned on going up two in the first 10 [minutes] at least, but that obviously didn’t happen,” Shenendehowa coach Holli Nirsberger said. “It was a great test for us, showed great resiliency, we’re thankful for that. You saw a second half team that was a little grittier than the first half.”
Plainsmen senior forward Margaret Partlow scored the opening tally, assisted by freshman Taylor Jourdanais with 14 minutes left in the first half.
The Plainsmen pressured Spartan goalkeeper Hannah Ashcraft throughout the first half, but the senior captain came up with six saves before Partlow broke through late.
Shenendehowa adjusted to the Spartan defense in the second as Ella White, Brooke DelSignore and Georgia Greene each scored before sophomore Emily Silva capped the gig with her dramatic closing note, an unassisted goal off her left foot from 25 yards out.
“I was trying to get in the back of the net for the last goal,” Silva said. “It’s my biggest goal yet.
“It was really special to finish off the game and show the team that we can end it on a power punch.”
The natural lefty knew the moment was upon her in the Burnt Hills end with less than 10 minutes to play.
“You kind of know,” Silva said. “You just look up and you see the goal, that’s all you focus on.”
With the win, Shenendehowa will be the No. 1 seed in the Suburban Council tournament, created by the athletic directors to culminate the COVID-19 impacted season, an answer to the New York State Public High School Athletic Association and Section II eliminating their respective postseason championships.
“We came into today just trying to build one final step going into next week,” Nirsberger said. “We wanted the one seed and wanted to put the ball in the back of the net.
“Coming off the Saratoga win [9-1], the Niskayuna win [8-3]and then this, we proved we can.”
The Suburban Council boys’ and girls’ soccer tournament will open Tuesday with the Plainsmen hosting a double-header beginning with the girls’ game at 3:30 p.m. and the boys’ contest starting at 5:30.
The official tournament seedings will be announced Sunday afternoon.
Halftime score: Shenendehowa 1, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake 0. Shenendehowa Scoring: Parlow 1-0, White 1-0, DelSignore 1-1, Greene 1-1, Silva 1-0, Jourdanais 0-1, McDonald 0-1, Caputo 0-1, DeMura 0-1. Burnt Hills scoring: None. Goalkeepers: Shenendehowa, Franklin 4 saves. Burnt Hills, Ashcraft, 11 saves.