High School Soccer

Beaufort Academy girls roll to SCISAA state soccer championship

mmccombs@beaufortgazette.comMay 11, 2013 

MOUNT PLEASANT -- Beaufort Academy head coach David Byrne joked with his team following Saturday's 6-1 win over Oakbrook Prep in the SCISAA Class 1-A/2-A girls soccer championship at Patriots Point Athletic Complex.

"I told them that the trophy was messed up. It doesn't say runner-up," joked Byrne, who won his second state championship in 10 trips to the final.

The Eagles (16-2) avenged a 3-2 loss to the Knights in last season's championship.

Prior to Saturday's game, Byrne said he told Eagles star Miranda Weslake that if she concentrated on distributing the ball from the middle, the rest of the Eagles would take care of the scoring.

Eighth-grader Mary Keane did just that, scoring four goals -- two in each half -- in just her fourth varsity contest.

"It really helped us get the ball to the middle," said Keane, who added she knew the Eagles would win when they went up 2-0. "(Weslake) is such a great ball handler."

Keane broke the ice with her first goal in the 19th minute. She stepped in front of a Knights player just outside the box to intercept Maggie Macdonald's goal kick.

Keane drove it in, colliding with Macdonald and goalkeeper Haley Broyles. Somehow, Keane was the player who stayed on her feet and put the ball in the net.

Her second goal came off the rebound of Weslake's shot from 30 yards out. Broyles made a diving save in the left corner, but the rebound went right to Keane, who put it high in the net.

"She's amazing," Weslake said. "If she's able to get to it, she'll score."

Coming out of the half with a 2-0 lead, Weslake scored less than five minutes in to push the lead to 3-0. She controlled a loose ball, took it through the middle of the box and put a point-blank shot past Broyles.

"She's really a special player," Byrne said.

India Kozel put Oakbrook Prep (10-3) on the board in the 55th minute and energized the Knights. But soon thereafter, Charlotte Delfosse made a spectacular diving stop on a Kozel direct kick, and the Knights were never able to mount much of a challenge after that.

Byrne said Delfosse's play was a key point in the game.

"If that ball goes in," Byrne said, "it was a game-changer. It would have been a 3-2 game with 25 minutes to play."

Ironically, Byrne wasn't sure if Delfosse would play or not. The senior keeper was dealing with an injured wrist and was supposed to be a game-time decision.

"She just said, 'I'm playing,' " he said.

Keane's two second-half goals -- in the 68th and 73rd minutes -- sandwiched a goal by Mary Alice Strohmeyer in the 71st minute.

Weslake said she knew the Eagles could win, but she "definitely wasn't expecting 6-1."

Byrne agreed, especially given that the Eagles started four eighth-graders, including Keane, who just more than a week ago were on coach Tom Savage's JV squad.

"They played a big part in all of this," Byrne said. "We've got a bright future because of the work he's done."

INJURY NOTE

Nine minutes into the first half, Oakbrook Prep's Leah McGetrick, one of the Knights' top players, went down with what appeared to be a left knee injury. She tried to return for the second half but banged knees with Eagle Amanda Kahn in the second minute and had to be carried from the field.

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