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A Good Week for Field Hockey and Soccer

Tue, 09/26/2023 - 11:25
Caeleigh Schuster “likes shootouts,” her mother, Danielle Schuster, the East Hampton High School field hockey coach, said after last Thursday’s 2-1 shootout win here over Harborfields.
Jack Graves

The beginning and ending of Saturday’s homecoming football game with Harborfields were, for Bonac fans, pleasing, though in between it was a different matter, as the Tornadoes went on to win 32-13 in snotty weather.

Afterward, Joe McKee, the team’s head coach, told his players it was “a good effort,” though he’s hoping for a better outcome in Saturday’s game here with winless Amityville, which was trounced 62-0 this week by Kings Park.

Field hockey, whose record was 7-0 as of Monday, provided Bonac partisans with plenty to cheer about in recent days, defeating Sayville 2-1 here on Sept. 19 thanks to a goal by Melina Sarlo in the first 7-on-7 overtime period, a goal that Emma McGrory set up with a crossing pass.

And last Thursday’s game here with Harborfields, which went down to a shootout following one 7-on-7 overtime period, was even more harrowing. Three of East Hampton’s five shooters — Sarlo, McGrory, and Ally Schaefer, who got the game-winner — scored, and Bonac won it 2-1 as the agile goalie, Caeleigh Schuster, parried three of the visitors’ shooters. In shootouts, the ball-handlers, beginning at the 25-yard line, dribble forward as the goalie comes out to confront them.

“Caeleigh likes shootouts,” her mother, and the team’s coach, Danielle Schuster, said after the nail-biting showdown.

McGrory, the best stick-handler on the field, broke the ice with a goal in the first half. The visitors tied it 1-1 at the end of the third quarter, putting the ball in behind Schuster, who was out of the cage. Schuster, who finished with 20 saves, made several in the early minutes of the fourth frame, a span during which the visitors were awarded half a dozen penalty corner plays in quick succession.

Ava Tintle, who backs Schuster up when she’s pressed, was also credited with two saves. “She was amazing — she played a great game,” Danielle Schuster said of Tintle afterward.

“It looks like all the games are going to be like that,” Melina’s father, Michael, said at the 100th anniversary of Bonac football party Saturday night at the Clubhouse in Wainscott, a party that drew about 250 attendees.

As of Monday, East Hampton field hockey topped Suffolk’s Division II at 7-0, though Shoreham-Wading River and Bayport-Blue Point were also undefeated, and Rocky Point and Eastport-South Manor each had only one loss. East Hampton was to have played at Bayport-Blue Point yesterday, and is to play at Eastport-South Manor Monday.

Back to the football game, Alex Davis put East Hampton on the scoreboard early as he blocked a Harborfields punt at its 38-yard line, scooped the ball up, and carried it into the end zone for a 6-0 East Hampton lead.

The visitors, whose quarterback, Jack Weiss, was to be cited as one of Newsday’s “Gridiron Greats” the next day, came right back with a 25-yard touchdown carry by him midway through the first period, a score that Vincent Bolognino followed with a run that treated the Tornadoes to an 8-6 lead, a lead that they were not to relinquish.

A safety, two long touchdown passes up the middle to Bolognino, and two extra-point kicks sent the visitors into halftime up 24-6.

A 24-yard pass from Charlie Corwin to Jai Feaster in the final minutes of the second quarter had Bonac fans cheering, though, after gaining another 20 yards, Feaster coughed the ball up and Harborfields recovered at its 32.

Likewise, a big catch-and-run gain in which Corwin and Eddie Cobb (who ran hard all day) teamed up near the end of the third quarter was called back because of an “illegal formation,” prompted, McKee said later, by the fact that “our wide receiver wasn’t on the line of scrimmage.”

Harborfields upped its lead to 30-6 as the result of a nine-yard touchdown run by Weiss with seven minutes left to play, and the extra-point kicker, Charles Serafin, made it 32-6, running the ball in after fumbling the snap.

Corwin raised Bonac’s spirits near game’s end, running for a touchdown from the visitors’ 10-yard line. Jason Lester’s kick was good for the 32-13 final.

In other action, the boys soccer team bageled Westhampton Beach 4-0 last Thursday. Three of the goals, the coach, Don McGovern, said, were scored in the first eight minutes, by Juan Salcedo, Brian Tacuri, and Gary Gutama. Chris Guallpa tacked on the fourth in the second half.

As of Monday, Tacuri led the team in goal-scoring, with five, followed by Chris Chimbo, Gutama, and John Bustamente, each with three. “Everyone else,” said McGovern, “has two or one.”

The team as of Monday was 3-1-1 in league play and 5-1-1 over all, the best overall record in League VI. East Islip was in the league lead that day, at 4-0-1, followed by Hauppauge at 4-1-1, East Hampton at 3-1-1, Comsewogue at 3-3-0, Eastport-South Manor at 1-3-1, Westhampton Beach at 1-4-0, and Rocky Point at 1-5-0. East Hampton was to have played at Hauppauge Tuesday, and is to be home against Eastport-South Manor this afternoon.

“We have to take it day by day,” said McGovern, adding that “the boys are working hard.”

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