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Smith Academy standout Cassidy Snyder reaches 100-goal milestone

  • Cassidy Snyder, of Smith Academy, shown against Frontier Regional on Monday, scored the 100th goal of her career in a 5-0 win over Ware on Thursday.

    Cassidy Snyder, of Smith Academy, shown against Frontier Regional on Monday, scored the 100th goal of her career in a 5-0 win over Ware on Thursday. Purchase photo reprints »

  • Cassidy Snyder, of Smith Academy, shown against Frontier Regional on Monday, scored the 100th goal of her career in a 5-0 win over Ware on Thursday.

    Cassidy Snyder, of Smith Academy, shown against Frontier Regional on Monday, scored the 100th goal of her career in a 5-0 win over Ware on Thursday. Purchase photo reprints »

  • Cassidy Snyder, of Smith Academy, shown against Frontier Regional on Monday, scored the 100th goal of her career in a 5-0 win over Ware on Thursday.
  • Cassidy Snyder, of Smith Academy, shown against Frontier Regional on Monday, scored the 100th goal of her career in a 5-0 win over Ware on Thursday.

WARE — Any high school soccer player who reaches 100 career goals must be an explosive scorer.

Smith Academy girls soccer star Cassidy Snyder exhibited that rare ability in hitting the triple-digit milestone on Thursday afternoon.

The senior forward put in her 99th and 100th goals just a minute apart in the second half of the Falcons’ 5-0 victory over Ware.

“That’s the type of player Cassidy is,” coach Matt McCloghry said. “The hardest thing to develop in soccer is a finisher. She can score from anywhere on any type of play. She’s really applied everything we work on in practice. I thought she came out and played a little tight early (Thursday), but once she found a rhythm the goals came quickly.”

After being kept scoreless through the first 52 minutes of action, Snyder headed in her first tally on a short feed from Moira Pitrat for No. 99.

One minute later, Snyder found some room to operate on the left side before blasting a perfect shot to the top-right corner just under the bar.

“Once the first one came I got excited to try to get the second,” Snyder said. “But scoring goals always depends on how the ball comes across and gets to you. I wouldn’t have been able to score (the 99th goal) without a nice pass from Moira or (the 100th) without a great ball from McKenzie (Wilson). So it’s always a team effort.”

Snyder was mobbed by her teammates after hitting the century mark. She was then subbed out so she could receive congratulations from McCloghry as well as family and friends in the stands.

“This was possible because of Coach,” Snyder said. “He’s pushed me every day to get better. I also have to thank (athletic director) Mr. (Dave) Keir, the whole Smith community, and of course my friends and family.”

Already the program’s all-time leading scorer, Snyder became the first player in the history of Smith Academy soccer with 100 goals.

“Yeah, that feels pretty good,” she said. “Goals are going to come if you take a team approach and my goal is to help the team win. I’d rather see my teammates score and help them along. We have a really young team this year, so if they can improve it gives us a better chance in the tournament.”

In the first half, Snyder hit a crossbar and a post on successive opportunities. She was also stopped a few times by Ware goalie Ashley Grout (12 saves).

“I didn’t get frustrated, but it can get difficult being defended by one player, then two and sometimes three,” Snyder said. “I try to put that aside the best I can and not lose my focus. I’m just looking to help my team in any way.”

McCloghry said, “She gets marked and double-teamed every game, but she’s learned how to beat the double teams with off-ball movement. And her teammates know how to get her the ball.”

Snyder has 12 goals and 17 total points through six games, but McCloghry is just as impressed with her intangibles.

“Her leadership is there this season, which is kind of out of her comfort zone,” McCloghry said. “But we need that because we have to play seventh and eighth graders. She’s really fun to be around, and it’s great to see her reach a milestone like this because she truly worked to get to such a level.”

A junior varsity player in seventh grade, Snyder joined the varsity as an eighth grader. McCloghry has seen improvement in her game in every successive season.

“Cassidy came to me after a good JV season and asked what she had to do to get better,” McCloghry said. “I gave her a blueprint of her strengths and weaknesses. She’s made her strengths better and worked at her weaknesses. She made the commitment to work in the offseason and every season she’s two steps above of where I think she’ll be to start the season.”

McCloghry, in his sixth season, pointed out the many great players and strong leaders he’s coached at Smith who helped guide Snyder.

Among all her teammates over five varsity seasons, Snyder singled out Mollie Higgins as a driving force behind her soccer success.

“I looked up to her because she was a forward, my position,” she said. “It was my sophomore year when she reached the 50-point mark, so that really inspired me.”

On Thursday, Hannah Rickert and Pitrat (assist) scored 22 seconds apart in the fifth minute to give Smith an early 2-0 lead. Carrie Ellis (assist) closed out the scoring with an unassisted tally late in the second half.

Keeper Brooke Pashek earned her fourth shutout of the season with eight saves.

“I wouldn’t mind being 6-0, but being at 5-1 is certainly a tremendous start,” McCloghry said. “We had some tough games early and have gotten through them in good shape.”

Michael Wilkinson can be reached at mwilkinson@gazettenet.com.

Congratulations Cassidy!! You truly have such Amazing, Natural Talent!! You have worked so hard to Accomplish this goal, and will continue to Accomplish many more in your Future!! Proud does not even touch the Feelings I Have Today and Every day when I think of you!!! Reach For The Stars Baby Girl!! I Love You. Love Mom

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