×

Division 4 girls soccer: 2 goals in succession send Granby to 5th straight WMass final

  • Granby goalkeeper Julia Gauvin lifts up Madison Sexton after the Rams beat Gateway 2-0 in their Western Massachusetts Division 3 semifinal at Holyoke High School, Wednesday. Visit gazettenet.com for more photos and video. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Maddison Clark (5) and Brynja Miltimore of Gateway embrace after the Gators' 2-0 loss to Granby in their WMass Div. 3 semifinal held at Holyoke High School on Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2018. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Nora Young, left, of Granby heads the ball over Angela Wright of Gateway in the second half of the Rams' 2-0 win over the Gators in their WMass Div. 3 semifinal held at Holyoke High School on Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2018. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Megan Lempke, left, of Granby defends the ball from Hannah Duggan of Gateway in the second half of the Rams' 2-0 win over the Gators in their WMass Div. 3 semifinal held at Holyoke High School on Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2018. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Rebecca Hyjek, left, of Gateway, tries to wrest control from Julia Frappier, of Granby, in the second half Wednesday. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Erin Harris, left, of Gateway and Ella Laliberte of Granby trade possession in the second half of the Gators' 2-0 loss to the Rams in their WMass Div. 3 semifinal held at Holyoke High School on Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2018. —STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING



Staff writer
Thursday, November 08, 2018

HOLYOKE — Trystin Burger capitalized on a moment of chaos and a moment of brilliance.

The senior scored two goals against Gateway Regional in a span of four minutes to send the Granby girls soccer team to a 2-0 win Wednesday in the Western Massachusetts Division 4 semifinals at Holyoke High School.

The top-seeded Rams (14-5-1) will face No. 3 Lenox (14-4-1) in the finals this weekend at Westfield State. They defeated the Millionaires 5-1 last year for their third straight sectional title. Granby (14-5-1) has reached a Western Mass. final every year since 2013.

“You’ll never be able to get over the feeling,” Burger said. “You feel accomplished.”

Both teams maintained their defensive shape for the first 20 minutes. Then Granby earned a corner.

The Rams floated a high ball into the box, and it skipped off Gateway keeper Becca Herman’s outstretched fingers. Burger tracked it through the mosh pit inside the 6-yard box and guided the ball over the goal line. Nora Young received an assist.

“It was crazy. Honestly I just saw the ball and went after it. We all got tips on that, it was a team effort,” Burger said.

Rather than relaxing with the lead, the Rams pressed their advantage.

“After the first one they have a knack, they’re like a vulture. They love to eat,” Granby coach Bob Weaver said. “They love to get after the goalie. They sense the team may be a little vulnerable.”

Two minutes later, Granby held possession again. Julia Frappier slipped a short pass to Burger 30 yards from goal, and she did the rest.

Burger dribbled around and away from three Gateway defenders to clear enough space for a shot. Herman tracked the attempt to her left, dove and put two gloves on the ball, but it bounced behind her for Burger’s second goal of the game.

“Honestly I didn’t (expect to score,)” Burger said. “That goalie’s amazing, I thought she had it clear in her hands. It was a big surprise it actually went through.”

Gateway (13-3-2) established itself more after halftime. The Gators changed their formation several times searching for the right combination.

“We grew and got better as we went along,” Gateway coach Steve Estelle said.

The Gators earned two corners in the 45th minute, and Hannah Duggan narrowly missed a goal just over the bar after a feed from Erin Harris.

Gateway pressured Granby late and played long passes to try and bypass the Rams’ midfield and attack fewer defenders when Granby pushed for a decisive third goal.

Young took two shots in dangerous positions, but Herman denied both.

“That girl (Young) is a special talent,” Estelle said.

Gateway seniors Herman, Grace LaBarron and Angela Wright played their final game for the Gators. Herman and Wright were named all-league in the Pioneer North.

“They’re very special,” Estelle said. “Those girls were so enjoyable to coach, how they learned, how they grew.”

Kyle Grabowski can be reached at kgrabowski@gazettenet.com. Follow him on Twitter @kylegrbwsk.