YORKTOWN – Alyssa Francese rarely gets to experience the luxury of time and space.
And for good reason.
The senior forward had an opportunity to get creative in the closing minutes on Sunday night and promptly lifted Yorktown to a 3-2 win over Rye with her 31st goal of the season.
A little room to maneuver was the difference.
“I turned and got past the defender, looked up and shot the ball,” said Francese, who’s heading to Stony Brook next fall. “I like having time and space to do something facing the goal. It’s a lot easier to score.”
Garnets defender Haley Nemsick did a nice job of keeping Francese company, but was on the sideline with an injury when the winning goal was scored.
“I thought we were in a good spot after we scored to make it a 2-2 game,” Rye coach Rich Savage said. “We let our guard down there for just a minute and Francese is dangerous.”
Remi White had scored four minutes earlier to knot the score for the Garnets.
The Huskers spent more time on the ball from the beginning, but were in a 1-0 hole when Sarah DeGraw got loose for a breakaway goal three minutes in.
“After that one, everybody was like, ‘Wow. We need to step it up,’ ” Ivana Pjetri said. “I think it made us play harder.”
Francese got a shot off in traffic and made it a 1-1 game 20 minutes before halftime. Pjetri scored on a 25-yard blast that went off the hand of Rye goalie Hannah Friedrich eight minutes into the second half.
Player of the game: Francese kept the defense busy, finishing with two goals and one assist.
Turning point: After getting beat down the field and giving up the early goal, the Huskers picked up the pace and began to play more aggressively on the defensive end of the field.
Stat line: Ariana Pjetri got the assist on the first goal by Francese and Ivana Pjetri got the assist on the second goal by Francese. … Caroline Nachman made 10 saves for Yorktown. … Anna O’Keefe and DeGraw each had one assist for the Garnets. … Friedrich made seven saves.
Quotable: “I think we look really good,” said Francese, whose team closes out the regular season against Scarsdale and Somers. “We play well together once we get it going. It’ll be good to play competitive teams going into sectionals. It’ll get us ready for what we’re going to face next.”