TUCKERS 20, CLIPPERS 11
Trish Brisotti and Colby Prokop have been on this rather remarkable journey together for a while now. They began playing lacrosse together since they were in third grade. They both made the Mattituck/Greenport/Southold high school varsity team four years ago as freshmen. There they were on Friday, standing together during a halftime ceremony, being recognized as the Tuckers’ only two seniors on senior day.
Brisotti and Prokop have seen a lot during their time with the Tuckers — the good, the bad and the ugly, as they say. They saw some of the lean years (the Tuckers went 1-13 and 5-11 during their freshman and sophomore seasons). They saw a major breakthrough last year when the Tuckers posted their first wining record (9-7) and reached the playoffs for the first time.
And now this. The Tuckers, in their sixth year of varsity play, are already assured of another winning season and a place in the playoffs. Brisotti and Prokop had to feel good about that as they took their places not far from their younger teammates, who lined up during the halftime presentation on the field in Cutchogue.
A sign behind one of the goals bore the message, “WE LOVE our SENIORS,” using the symbol of a heart for the word love.
The ceremony featured the usual senior day fixtures: flowers, parents, photos. No visible tears, though, from a distance.
“I just wanted to make sure I didn’t cry in front of everybody and I didn’t fall on my face,” said Brisotti, who was successful on both counts.
Coach Matt Maloney, in his public remarks during the presentation, said Brisotti, a midfielder, and Prokop, an attackman, have meant a lot to his young team, which includes 11 players in grades 7 through 10 on the 22-player roster. “These two young ladies contributed much more than stats this year,” he said, praising their leadership.
Perhaps partly inspired by the halftime ceremony, the Tuckers then went out and topped off the occasion by firing in a season-high goals total for a 20-11 defeat of Bellport.
Both seniors had a hand in the scoring. Prokop put up two goals and two assists. Brisotti, who is expected to become the first former Tuckers player to compete at the NCAA Division II level next year for LIU Post, had a goal as well.
The Tuckers (9-4, 8-4 Suffolk County Division II) shot out to a 4-0 lead, with Katie Hoeg scoring three of those goals and assisting on another. From there the game evolved into a virtual shootout, with each side firing back at each other with goals. Bellport (6-7, 4-7) never gained the lead, but closed the gap to one goal three times in the first half before its offense fizzled in the second half.
Hoeg, a junior midfielder, rang up eight goals from eight shots. She also recorded three assists and seven ground balls in a superb performance. Her cousin, Audrey Hoeg, collected four goals and four assists.
Katie Hoeg’s two younger sisters also featured prominently. Mackenzie Hoeg scored twice and Riley Hoeg had a goal and three assists.
Annika Johnsen led Bellport with four goals and one assist. Hailey Wagner was busy, registering three goals, two assists and 12 ground balls. Courtney Pabst added a hat trick and an assist for the Clippers, who were outshot by 28-15.