CICERO — Keeley Samsonik scored on a penalty stroke in the second 7-on-7 overtime, lifting Brighton to a 1-0 state Class B semifinal win over Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake at Cicero-North Syracuse High School.
“I felt like we had the upper hand for a lot of the game,” said Burnt Hills coach Kelly Vrooman. “We couldn’t get it in the cage. Our offense didn’t do its thing.”
The Burnt Hills defense did for the fifth time in the postseason, though, with Brittany Ryan making 20 saves and Lexie Ball and Danielle Kempf excelling in the open field.
“Our defense did a tremendous job,” said Vrooman. “We took away opportunities from number 17 [Samsonik], and she’s the second-leading scorer in Section V. She didn’t score until she got the stroke.”
The deciding stroke was called after an infraction during a penalty corner. Both teams had come up empty on penalty strokes in regulation.
Burnt Hills (14-7) made its last state final four appearance in 1987 when Vrooman was among its standout players, and the Spartans captured the Class A championship.
“We’re a grass team,” Vrooman said. “For us to get this far was a great accomplishment.”
Burnt Hills beat East Syracuse-Minoa (1-0 2OT), South Glens Falls (4-0), Johnstown (3-0) and Scotia-Glenville (4-0) in playoff games leading up to Saturday’s semifinal.
Ryan was named to the all-tournament team, and BH-BL’s Aubrey Kamppila was recognized for her sportsmanship.
Veronica Verstraten made 16 saves for Brighton (19-1).
Shenendehowa (19-2) earned a spot in the Class A title game with a 4-0 triumph over Fairport.
Anna Bottino scored a goal in each half before Emily Fraser and Nicole daCunha padded Shenendehowa’s lead in its first state semifinal appearance. Claire Virkler, Katie Kerner and Bottono had assists.
Shenendehowa will attempt to become Section II’s first state champion since Glens Falls in 2001 when it meets Sachem East today at 3 p.m. at C-NS. Sachem East beat Kingston, 4-0, in Saturday’s first semifinal.
Shenendehowa slugged Fayetteville-Manlius in regional play, 5-1, and has outscored its five postseason opponents, 18-2.