Bazyk leads BBA to semi
MANCHESTER -- With the seconds winding down, No. 1 Burr and Burton Academy's Morgan Bazyk fired a shot -- maybe one of the most important of her career -- past Burlington goalie Norah Mitchell, causing the BBA faithful to erupt.
Bazyk finished off a BBA comeback, scoring the game-winner with 28.5 seconds remaining to propel the Bulldogs to a 13-12 win over the 8th seeded Seahorses in a Division I girls lacrosse quarterfinal on Saturday.
The Bulldogs trailed by five goals, 12-7, with 16 minutes left in regulation and that's when they started to make their comeback.
BBA made it 12-8 a couple of minutes later, then Bazyk took over, with the senior attacker scoring two goals in 47 seconds to make the score 12-10 with 10:57 remaining.
Two minutes later, she was back at it. After faking to her right, Bazyk spun back left into the middle and fired a shot past Mitchell -- who had 19 saves -- to pull the Bulldogs to within a goal. Thirty-four seconds later, she knotted the game at 12 apiece with 7:10 remaining.
The Bulldog defense held, keeping the score at 12-12, when the offense came up with the ball near their own goal. BBA raced downfield with about 2 minutes left to play, waiting for a good shot opportunity.
"I was really confident once we had the ball that they could finish and it's great that it was Morgan. Hayley [Sabol] really gave her a nice pass," said BBA coach Dave Miceli. "Morgan moved well without the ball. They'd been marking her pretty tightly and obviously they should have, but Morgan was able to come free as they focused on Hayley."
After scoring the goal on senior day, Bazyk embraced a teammate and was mobbed by several others as the crowd at the BBA campus continued to cheer.
"It was amazing," Bazyk said. "It wasn't just amazing for me, but it was amazing for my whole team as well because they worked so hard to get me and Hayley the ball and the whole team had a part in that goal, it wasn't just me. Everyone had the same feeling I did, so it was awesome."
After gaining possession of the ball with just over two minutes remaining, Miceli called a timeout to talk to the team.
"When I called our timeout it was to let our girls know that they had just won the game," said Miceli. "Preventing them (Burlington) from running the clock down and taking the last shot, getting possession of the ball; that was the game right there."
Burlington started the scoring off about a minute into the game, but BBA's Lauren Miskovsky equalized a few minutes later.
Burlington (9-7) then scored the first of three consecutive goals that they rattled off over the next 1:09 to take a 4-1 lead.
After the teams traded goals, BBA attacker Katy Jones netted home to make the score 5-3. A little over a minute later, Bazyk got her first of six on the afternoon. Handling the ball behind the net, Bazyk began to run toward the goalie's right side before spinning, coming around the left side into the middle and firing a shot from the waist that bounced into the goal to pull the Bulldogs to within one.
The teams traded goals again before Burlington's Monica Weltman gave the Seahorses a two-goal advantage with 6:02 left in the first half. Then Madison Feeney -- who had two goals and an assist on the afternoon -- connected to give the Seahorses an 8-5 lead going into halftime.
Burlington carried the momentum over into the second half, with Casey O'Neill (two goals) scoring just over two minutes in. Fifteen seconds later, Burlington's Bleonda Sulejmani -- who had five goals in the contest -- got the ball off the draw and took it downfield for the score to give the Seahorses a 10-5 advantage.
"She's fabulous. She's consistently fabulous," said Burlington coach Jane Carney. "She's been wonderful all season. She is absolutely fearless and just an excellent team player and just works really hard for us."
But the lead wasn't enough to turn away the Bulldogs.
Though Bazyk led the team in scoring, Miceli made it clear that the impressive comeback win was a complete team effort with players such as Caitlin Merrill and Mary Leech coming up with several ground balls that they were able to move down the field and Ryder Ferrone playing an important role in the win as well, Miceli said.
"She got possession for us over and over and over and those moments off the ball, or away from the goal, [are the ones] that really decide the game and I felt Ryder Ferrone really stepped up today," Miceli said.
Aggie and Lucy Bisselle, Ferrone and Sabol all scored a goal each in the game for BBA. Noami Husman and Andrea Noonan scored a goal each for Burlington.
BBA goalie Lauren MacKenzie had 10 saves in the cage on Saturday.
No. 1 seeded BBA will face No. 4 Mount Anthony Union High School in the Division I semi-finals on Tuesday at BBA. The game begins at 4 p.m.
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