Schalmont defends Section II Class B girls’ soccer title, tops Broadalbin-Perth

Schalmont girls' soccer players celebrate the 1-0 victory over Broadalbin-Perth at Stillwater High School Friday, October 28, 2022.

Schalmont girls' soccer players celebrate the 1-0 victory over Broadalbin-Perth at Stillwater High School Friday, October 28, 2022.

STILLWATER – Schalmont made the most of its golden opportunity Friday night. Meanwhile, the opportunity Broadalbin-Perth thought it had wasn’t to be.

Gianna Cirilla’s first-half penalty kick stood up in the top-seeded Sabres’ 1-0 win in the Section II Class B girls’ soccer final at Stillwater High School. It was the Sabres’ second straight Class B title.

Schalmont (17-2) will play Section VII’s Saranac in a regional semifinal at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at Stillwater.

Cirilla’s penalty kick with 16:26 left in the half was brought about by a holding call on Schalmont’s previous corner kick. Cirilla, a sophomore forward, kicked it to the center-right side of the net.

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“I was definitely nervous, but I just thought I have to do this for my team, I have to score this goal,” Cirilla said. “Like, this can be our shot to get us going.”

“That momentum shift is big for us,” Schalmont coach Ryan Fries said. “Stakes are high here. Teams are coming to play, and Broadalbin, they brought it.”

The Sabres, who were controlling possession, were dealt a bad break late in the first half when their all-star center midfielder Simone Cassano went out with a left leg injury. She returned to start the second half, but clearly wasn’t 100 percent. Despite being compromised, she contributed against the game Patriots.

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“She stays in her position, she knows her position,” Schalmont coach Ryan Fries said of Cassano. “That, the distribution, knowing where that ball needs to be and our game plan, that’s why [we kept her in]. We needed her to be in for that, and her communication and leadership.”

Broadalbin-Perth (15-4-1) played Schalmont more evenly in the second half, and thought it had the tying goal with 20:10 when Jillian Sassanella, facing away from the goal in the box area, made a right-footed overhead shot that went in the goal, but the referee waved it off as a dangerous play.

“Unlucky circumstance with the PK for the girls, then an unlucky one with the goal being called off, but that’s the way the ball bounces sometimes,” Patriots coach Rob Klug said. “Calls go your ways some days, and some days they don’t.”

Broadalbin-Perth had a few possessions that might have turned into something, but the Sabres’ back line and midfielders kept possession enough for none of them to be serious.

“Keeping our composure and playing as a team,” Cirilla said, as the keys to the second half. “Getting through balls and passing to each other, one, two touches. Working together got us open shots.”

For the Patriots, making their first finals appearance in a decade, they couldn’t fault their effort or heart, just their luck.

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“It was a great game,” Klug said. “I thought the girls played well. Unfortunately, at the end of the day, the ball didn’t bounce our way a couple of times. The girls left it all on the field. I thought they executed our game plan and put ourselves in a good position to win the game.”

Halftime score: Schalmont, 1-0. Schalmont scoring: Cirilla 1-0. Goalies: Broadalbin-Perth, Marsden, 7 saves. Schalmont, Clark, 6 saves.

Categories: High School Sports, Rotterdam, Sports, Sports

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