In high school girls soccer, there are no golden goals — and there was no Golden goal Friday night, although Jillian Golden made her return to Mattituck/Southold/Greenport following an injury. But after 80 scoreless minutes, East Hampton and MSG went to 20 minutes of mandatory overtime. It was during the added time when MSG did what it couldn’t do during regulation time: score.
Overtime goals by Amber Rochon and Claire Gatz carried MSG to a 2-0 victory in a homecoming game at Mattituck High School. The result earned MSG a home playoff game, said coach Chris Golden.
Despite throwing just about everything it could at East Hampton goalkeeper Julissa Fajardo (four saves) and dominating the second half, MSG (5-8, 5-7 Suffolk County Division II) had to wait until OT for Gatz, a junior forward, to supply the spark it needed.
Some nice work on the left side by Gatz set up her pass to Rochon for a tap-in by the far right post 7:23 into OT.
“That’s Claire,” Chris Golden said. “Claire works hard. Claire is one of the hardest-working girls we have. That’s a work engine right there.”
Gatz then provided the insurance with a fortunate bounce. Her right-footed shot took a funny, high bounce over Fajardo and floated into the goal with 4:09 remaining.
Jillian Golden, who missed the previous six games with a fractured right wrist, received medical clearance and returned to the field. Wearing a half-inch of foam over a cast on her arm, the senior forward began the game sitting on the bench. When her coach and father, Chris Golden, gave her the nod to warm up, she immediately popped up off the bench and ran on the side. Golden entered the game at 22:38 and made an instant impact, attacking and putting pressure on the East Hampton defense. She played about half the match.
“We’re really good with her on the field,” said Chris Golden.
MSG put Krissy Worysz in goal in place of regular goalie Sarah Santacroce. Santacroce, wearing No. 13, played the sweeper position normally held by Marie Mullen, who has been dealing with a thigh injury. Worysz made three saves for the shutout.
The best scoring chance of the first half actually belonged to East Hampton (6-7-1, 5-6-1). Sofia Garcia cranked a right-footed attempt off the right post 2:14 before halftime.
The second half saw MSG throw just about everything and anything it could at the East Hampton goal. Rochon, on the doorstep of the goal, pushed an effort off a corner kick wide. Later, Santacroce drove a long free kick that Fajardo managed to block on a tricky short hop; the ball ricochetted over an MSG player and was cleared away.
“We threw everyone forward,” Gatz said. “I could tell it was coming.”
MSG outshot the visitors, 18-7, and held a 7-1 advantage in corner kicks.
As he headed to his truck for the drive home, Chris Golden seemed content. He said, “It was a good night.”