Girls’ soccer: Season ends with playoff losses for Conant, Wilton-Lyndeborough

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

  • The Conant girls' soccer team hosted Campbell in the NHIAA Division III playoffs on Thursday. Staff photo by Ben Conant—

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 10/29/2020 8:59:34 PM

It was late in the second half when Conant senior captain Megan Graff lofted her shot, the ball curving and cutting through the downpour before shaking the raindrops off the back of the Campbell net. Graff turned and couldn’t get a step before teammate Gianna Sangermano had her wrapped in an embrace. 

It was the only goal the Orioles would score on Thursday afternoon, as the visiting Cougars came to Jaffrey and left with a 7-1 win in the NHIAA Division III tournament prelim round, but it was something to celebrate, nonetheless.

“It was well deserved,” said head coach Adam Patria. “She’s worked her tail off and I couldn’t be prouder of her.”

So, too, was the season itself, short and strange as it was. The Orioles were in every single game they played, with the exception of one off day against Wilton and the playoff rout, and held their own against Division I Keene. Despite having three substitutes or less the entire season, Conant had a shot at winning, and despite how close they kept every game, the Orioles only won one of them.

“You gotta be able to battle adversity, and we seem to get a lot,” said assistant coach Andrew Graff. 

“We’d be better off with no luck, because all we have is bad,” Patria said.

Thanks to the open tournament, which the NHIAA seeded randomly, Conant became perhaps the first 1-9 team in history to secure a No. 1 seed and a home playoff game, a treat no matter how you come by it. Patria, maybe joking, said he’s going to print out the bracket and frame it. But he wasn’t joking when he told his rain-soaked girls that this was a season he’d always remember. 

“There’s a big improvement from the day we started until now,” Patria said. “Obviously today’s not an indication of that.”

Graff is the only graduating senior for the Orioles, who’ll return junior captain Heather Gonyea along with seven other current juniors. 

 

Sunapee 7, Wilton-Lyndeborough 1

The undefeated defending champion Lakers continued their winning ways Thursday, sending yet another Wilton team home with a playoff loss. 

“The girls played too tentative in the first half,” said head coach Dan Ayotte, “gave the Lakers too much respect.”

WLC was down 5-0 at the half but fought until the end and added a goal from junior Elisabeth Jacob in the second. 

“They all, to a one, want to get better next season to get beyond this Sunapee roadblock,” Ayotte said.

WLC graduates forward Sophia Sistachs, goalkeeper Tiffany Cuddihy and midfielder Sam Yurcak, who missed the season with an ACL injury. 




Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

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