One could make the case that the best girls’ soccer in the PSAL this year was played in Manhattan and the Bronx. After all, Beacon made the Class A championship game before being turned away in its bed to repeat by McKee/Staten Island Tech. Bronx Science also made it to the semifinals.
Manhattan was clearly one of the stronger divisions. Aside from Beacon, Stuyvesant and Hunter College HS were contenders and LaGuardia was a playoff team. The Bronx had a few solid squads like Clinton and Columbus after Bronx Science. And there’s plenty of talent left in both boroughs for next year and beyond.
Bronx/Manhattan Girls’ Soccer
Player Of The Year
D Chelsea Davies, Beacon: Davies wasn’t just the best sweeper in the city. She almost single-handedly led Beacon to a second straight PSAL Class A title. When Francis Lewis scored late in the second half in the semis, Davies moved up and her pressure allowed Alex Easton to score the equalizer just 30 seconds later. The Blue Demons went on to win in penalty kicks.
In the championship game against McKee/Staten Island Tech, Davies held the Sea Gulls’ high-powered offense in check for 80 minutes and then another two, 10-minute overtime periods. MSIT would go on to win in penalties, but Davies more than did her job. The Williams College-bound senior was the most indispensable piece on one of the city’s best teams.
Bronx/Manhattan Girls’ Soccer
Coach Of The Year
Kevin Jacobs, Beacon: Repeating was hard enough for Beacon. The Blue Demons came into the playoffs in 2008 as a sixth seed and made a Cinderella run to a PSAL Class A championship. No one was going to be taken by surprise this season. Beacon had a bull’s eye on its back from Day One.
And then, early in the season, the Blue Demons lost their best strike, Christina Angione, to a torn ACL. Jacobs had to adjust on the fly, with a number of freshmen in his lineup. Others stepped up and Beacon was just fine. His best coaching move all season? Bringing Chelsea Davies, the city’s best sweeper, up in the waning minutes against Francis Lewis with his team down a goal. Davies’ pressure gave the Patriots fits and a rebound of her shot 30 seconds after Lewis scored was put in by Alex Easton. Brilliant job by Jacobs.
F Gabrielle Beer, Stuyvesant: Beer was just a pure goal scorer. Her speed and touch were a sight to behold. The senior had 14 goals and an assist in 11 regular-season games and she tallied four goals in just two playoff matches. It was by far Beer’s most productive year in a Mimbas uniform.
M Morgan Browning, Stuyvesant: Tall, strong and good on the ball, Browning was so important in the midfield for Stuyvesant. That’s why not having her for its PSAL Class A second-round game against Susan Wagner – Browning had bronchitis – was so heartbreaking. She had six goals and four assists in 11 regular-season games and added three goals in the first round of the playoffs.
M Alexandra Bushman, Bronx Science: Bushman was far from a physically imposing presence in the midfielder, like teammate Taylor Murtaugh. But in many ways, she was a perfect complement. Bushman’s speed and skill were excellent. Her breakaway goal against McKee/Staten Island Tech in the PSAL Class A semifinals, Science’s lone one, was an incredible individual effort. Bushman had 14 goals and eight assists in nine regular-season games and had a goal and an assist in two playoff matches. Not bad for someone who played in the back last year.
D Phoebe Dawkins, Bronx Science: Get used to seeing this name among the PSAL’s elite. The freshman could take Chelsea Davies’ title as the city’s best defender at some point. Dawkins’ presence allowed Alexandra Bushman to move up to midfield, making the unit probably the best in the league. The scary part is Dawkins is still learning.
M Alex Easton, Beacon: Her numbers were underwhelming. Easton had four goals and two assists in 11 regular-season games and two postseason goals in four games. But Easton made an impact on games in other ways. The freshman was so strong and physical in the midfield. And when she did score, she did at the most opportune time. Her early goal against Petrides in the PSAL Class A quarterfinals was the game winner and she equalized against Francis Lewis in the semis to send the game into overtime.
F Elsa Hardy, Beacon: When Christina Angione, Beacon’s best striker, tore her ACL early in the season, the Blue Demons needed someone to step up offensively. Hardy was that person. The junior had 12 goals and five assists in 11 regular-season games. Her scoring touch was necessary in Beacon’s run to the PSAL Class A championship game.
M Sophie Kligler, Beacon: Cool, calm and collected, Kligler was a stabilizing force in the midfield. The showed poise beyond her years and an innate ability to make players. Kligler had eight goals and eight assists in 11 regular-season games. She’s a big part of Beacon’s future – and it’s certainly a bright one.
M Bitsy Morgan, Bronx Science: Morgan was one of the best playmakers in the city. She played in just seven regular-season games, but notched 11 assists and eight goals. Morgan was a major key to Bronx Science getting back to the PSAL Class A semifinals. Her precision passing and defensive ability made her one of the league’s best.
M Taylor Murtaugh, Bronx Science: Big, strong and physical, Murtaugh always left it all on the field. The junior was incredible at throw-ins and won just about every 50-50 ball she tried for – and she tried for all of them. Murtaugh, a star on the school’s girls’ basketball team, had 13 goals and 12 assists in 11 regular-season games. She had a goal and an assist in two playoff contests.
M Tammie Schneider, LaGuardia: A consummate playmaker, Schneider had six goals and eight assists this season, helping to lead LaGuardia to the PSAL Class A playoffs for the second straight season. Schneider had eight assists and six goals in 11 regular-season games. In a penalty kick loss to James Madison in the first-round of the postseason, Schneider notched a goal and an assist.
F Sarah Thompson, Hunter College HS: Gillie Collins has been the Hawks’ star the last three years, but she played in just seven games this year. Thompson had no problem being Hunter’s primary offensive threat. The senior had nine goals and four assists in nine regular-season games, helping her team go 9-3 in Manhattan A-II.
M Margaux Alicea, Beacon
M Emma Almon, Hunter College HS
F Jennifer Angione, Beacon
GK Nora Barr, Beacon
M Gillie Collins, Hunter College HS
F Pashke Gjini, Columbus
F Anna Hewitt, Bronx Science
F Stephanie Mazursky, Bronx Science
F Chavelle McKenzie, Clinton
F Caroline Quigley, Beacon
F Jennifer Poretz, Beacon
M Lucinda Rawe, LaGuardia
M Faye Terry, LaGuardia
D Emma Stanislawski, Bronx Science
F Jacqueline Wideen, Bronx Science