Here is Jermaine Dennis’ game story on Eastchester’s 2-0 win against Rye.
TUCKAHOE After three years of playoff despair, Eastchester finally got back into the Class A section finals with a 2-0 win over Rye Thursday at Tuckahoe High School.
Eastchester, the No. 6 seed, will travel to Arlington to face top-seed Byram Hills Saturday at 4 p.m.
In 2009, the Eagles defeated Rye in a shootout for the section title. And now, once again, Eastchester sent No. 7 Rye home in dismay.
“You can’t say enough about these girls. They are resilient,” Eastchester coach Frank Fiore said. “We’ve been pushed down, knock down and played a tough schedule this season.
“But that’s why we did it. The schedule was made to get us ready for sectionals.”
The Eagles came into the postseason flustered after suffering two losses to out-of-league opponents at the end of the season. But now, one win away from achieving their preseason aspiration, the Eagles are glad to have weathered the storm when they did.
Forward Dava Fortunato has played an immense role in the Eagles’ post-season. The senior conitued her brilliant playoff run with a goal to put the Eagles up 2-0, her fifth goal of the postseason.
“We knew what we had coming,” Fortunato said about Rye, which defeated second seed Somers and defending champ Pearl River to get to the semis. “We knew we had to capitalize whenever we had a open shot… I saw my shot and took it.”
Claire Teahan gave the Eagles their first score from 30 yards out in the 53rd minute. Rye’s goalie Maddie Eck had a grasp on Teahan’s shot for a moment. But with the wet conditions playing a factor in game, the ball slipped out of her hands and rolled in for the score.
“We went into the game with the mentality that we didn’t want any regrets at the end,” Teahan said. “It was wet and it slipped. Unlucky for them, but it works for us.”
Rye had its opportunities late, but Eastchester’s Clarissa Mejia came up with eight huge saves to preserve the shutout.
Eck finished with seven saves.
Photos courtesy of Seth Harrison/Journal News. For the entire gallery click here.