Girls soccer: Benet handles St. Viator to cap unbeaten ESCC title

 
 
Updated 5/9/2022 9:45 PM

Benet is going to have some big shoes to fill following the graduation of Lewis-bound senior striker Mariana Pinto.

But Pinto's replacement might already be on the roster.

 

Pinto scored her team-leading 22nd goal on a penalty kick. But freshman forward Keira Petrucelli and senior midfielder Katie Lewellyan each had two goals and an assist as the host Redwings routed St. Viator 6-1 on Monday to complete a second consecutive unbeaten run through the East Suburban Catholic Conference.

Benet (15-4, 7-0) has won three straight ESCC titles. The Redwings shared the 2019 crown but have won the last two outright.

"It's a really, really good feeling," Lewellyan said. "My freshman year when we won state, we were co-champions of the conference, so it feels really good my senior year to win it outright."

Lewellyan scored on a short shot five minutes into the game to open the scoring. Benet later scored on three consecutive shots to open up a 4-0 lead.

Petrucelli made it 2-0 when she got her first goal of the game at the 27:31 mark off an assist from Brinkley Douglas. Pinto converted her penalty kick 37 seconds later and Gabi DiMatteo tapped in a sharp cross from freshman Chloe Sentman 2:10 after that.

The fast start shocked everyone.

"We thought it would be a closer game, but everyone was just playing for the seniors and it really showed on the field," Lewellyan said. "We were so fired up. We all just wanted to win so bad today."

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That included the rookie Petrucelli, who bagged her second two-goal game of the season. She also scored twice in Benet's 5-1 win over Marist.

"The seniors have honestly been the biggest help and obviously got me to where I am today," Petrucelli said. "They show me how I can improve and they've always been there for me, which is why I think our team works so well together and why everybody is happy for each other."

St. Viator (8-4-3, 3-2-2) got on the board when Emillie Doersching scored off a feed from Josephine Westerkamp with 4:39 to go in the first half.

The Lions had a gusty wind at their backs in the second half but couldn't take advantage as Lewellyan and Petrucelli took turns setting each other up for Benet's fifth and sixth goals.

"Keira is doing amazing," Lewellyan said. "She really stepped into her role and knew her place and is always just there for the team and listens really well.

'I think she'll be a huge impact through her senior year."

Petrucelli already is making a significant impact. She has recorded six goals and five assists.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"She has incredible feet," Benet coach Gerard Oconer said. "Her soccer IQ is so high, especially as a freshman.

"She's just a sponge when it comes to what we try to coach her to do, and the most impressive thing is before the season she really hadn't played in a little over a year because she had a torn ACL. So for her to come into a team like this and be able to contribute like she has, she's been spectacular."

The Redwings, who have won six in a row, were spectacular in beating a fierce rival. The Lions hadn't surrendered six goals in a game since 2015.

"It was really scary, but the whole team was really excited," Petrucelli said. "We just went in wanting to step to every ball and show how we play and why we deserve to be conference champions."

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