Islip High School’s girls varsity soccer team won the 2023 New York State High School Girls Soccer Hall of Fame tournament on Sept. 10. Over 60 of the top teams in New York State from all six classifications were invited for the two-day weekend event, one of the country’s largest high school soccer tournaments.
Games were played on Saturday, both morning and night, with a two-hour afternoon break during which a Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place, attended by hundreds of fans, family members and athletes. Each team also played a second game on Sunday.
Islip’s Lady Bucs defeated two of the top-ranked teams in their classification over the weekend, while triumphing over a few obstacles. Originally set to depart from Islip High School at 6 a.m. and play at noon, Islip’s team – sharing a bus with Harborfields High School – did not leave the grounds until 11:30 a.m., due to charter bus issues. After a three-hour drive to Niskayuna High School in Schenectady County, the Lady Bucs attended the Hall of Fame ceremony. They wound up playing at 5:30 p.m., coming back from a 2-0 deficit to defeat Nichols School by a score of 4-3, with four different goal scorers: Emma Bowe, Gianna Capolongo, Imani Hood and Nicole Matute. The Lady Bucs then had a quick turnaround, playing their next game the following day at 9 a.m. against a top-ranked Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake team. Abby Dieumegard supplied Islip with the game’s only goal, resulting in a 1-0 win for Islip and the title of Hall of Fame tournament champs.
“Way to go, girls and coaches,” Athletic Director John Sparacio said.
“This was truly a great experience for all,” said Islip coach Mike Reilly, a former Hall of Fame inductee. “Our Lady Bucs are currently 4-0-2, and we look forward to another successful season together, both on and off the pitch.”