By Janee Law
Northport girls soccer senior captain and midfielder Emily McNelis got the Lady Tigers off to an early start Monday, when she netted the team’s first goal within the first minute of the game against Riverhead.
Five minutes later, Alexa Ramonetti, junior midfielder and goalie, scored the second goal from the 18-yard box, before McNelis scored the third with 30 minutes left in the first half.
The Lady Tigers scored five more goals throughout the game to top off the 8-0 win.
“I really liked how the girls were moving the ball,” coach Aija Gipp said. “They were communicating really nicely with each other on the field, which created a lot of really nice plays. Collectively, I thought the whole group really played well as a team.”
Other top performers were senior defender Lili Buscareno, junior forward Olivia Carner, junior midfielder Elizabeth Cianciotti, and senior captain Victoria Colatosti, a forward.
Junior midfielder Iris Savocchi scored the last goal of the game with 17 minutes remaining.
Competing in the Suffolk League II, the Lady Tigers are 2-0. In overall play this season they sport a 4-0 record.
Gipp said the camaraderie between the girls so far this season has been great.
“We’ve had a lot of games in such a short time and I think the girls all really have good chemistry,” Gipp said. “They really want to get back to the championship game so they’ve been a fun group to coach so far.”
Gipp added that while the offense works on movement to create goal scoring opportunities, the defensive focus is to stay tight as a unit, communication and deterring opponents to develop any breakaways.
With 27 girls on the roster, Gipp said the goal this season is to get back to the county finals. “The girl’s ultimate goal is to get upstate, which is a long road between now and then, but our short term goal is to be county champs again.”
Now, the girls know what it takes to get into the county finals, Gipp said.
“They want to get back there and they want to go even further this year,” she said. “They know the work ethic that’s required to get there so I think that works to our advantage going into the season.”
Senior goalie Emma Havrilla played an intricate role in the team’s county win last year, Gipp said. She added that Havrilla has “been so solid for us so far and I’m really excited to see how her season is going to develop.”
The Lady Tigers were scheduled to face Bay Shore after deadline on Wednesday. They’re next slated to host Lindenhurst for a 4 p.m. game on Tuesday.