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Newcomers’ Burlacu leads Lions over Jamaica, 3-2

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Wherever the ball went, there was Burlacu, pushing the ball away from a Beavers forward, sliding...

By Dylan Butler

While it seemed there were four or five of her on the field Monday against Jamaica, there was only one Laura Burlacu for the Newcomers girls’ soccer team.

Wherever the ball went, there was Burlacu, pushing the ball away from a Beavers forward, sliding the ball to a forward from the midfield, taking corner kicks. The only thing the Lions’ junior didn’t do was play goal.

“She’s awesome,” said Newcomers first-year coach Elizabeth Schuellein. “I’ve never met a player like her. She is such a leader on the field.”

Burlacu was instrumental in every goal in the Lions’ 3-2 win over Queens III foe Jamaica at Flushing Meadows Corona Park. And she did all that while battling a bruised right thigh that was heavily taped.

“I usually play in the midfield, but because I was hurt I mostly played defense,” said the native of Romania. “Sometimes I got tired, but I was OK.”

Newcomers (2-0) dominated the first half, but the Lions struggled to finish their chances, most coming off Burlacu’s corner kicks. On one of several first half corners, Burlacu sent the ball toward the far post where Beata Borowik stood unmarked. But instead of striking the ball one time, the junior settled the ball and Jamaica recovered.

Newcomers finally took a 1-0 lead in the 29th minute on another Burlacu corner, which bounced off a Beavers defender and into the net. Seven minutes later, Jamaica was again victimized by shoddy defense when Zadaika Cantillo struck the ball with her back to the goal and it deflected off a Jamaica defender’s head and into the goal to give the Lions a 2-0 lead.

Despite missing five players — including three starters — Jamaica (1-1) roared back just before the end of the first half. The Beavers used their speedy forwards to their advantage when Susanatte Grant found Jesse Cerna, who had a breakaway from 40 yards out. The junior striker dribbled into the box and beat Newcomers junior keeper Vanessa Fondeur with a low shot from 10 yards out to cut the Lions’ lead to 2-1.

“I thought they played real well,” said Jamaica coach Eric Chasanoff. “It was tough but I thought they played their hearts out. I’m real proud of the girls.”

On another misclearance by the Jamaica defense, Ilham Jaoui picked up a loose ball in the box and pushed it past Jamaica keeper Daniella Adams to put Newcomers in front, 3-1, two minutes into the second half.

“I told our girls a big part of our game is to keep the pressure on,” Schuellein said. “It forces the other team to make mistakes. We have a fantastic defense and our offense is extremely powerful.”

Burlacu had several quality chances in the second half, but Adams was solid in the net for Jamaica. In the 55th minute, Adams stopped Burlacu’s direct kick from 20 yards out. In the 61st minute Burlacu lifted the ball from 40 yards out, but Adams got a piece of the ball on the bounce to push it over the end line.

Jamaica’s speed up front set up its second goal when Cerna was fouled while making a long run up the field. Off the set piece Blanca Chimbay settled a loose ball in the box and beat Fondeur to cut Newcomers’ lead to 3-2 in the 66th minute.

The Beavers gave the Lions another scare late in the game, but Chimbay was called offside on an odd-man rush that could have tied the game.

Cardozo 6, Arts & Business 0. Kelly Kaso and Denise Vallejo each scored two goals for the Judges (3-0).

Bryant 4, Forest Hills 2. Sirra Jones, Claudia Arias, Vivian Andino and Dena Veselica each scored for Bryant (4-0, 2-0 Queens II). Ana Borges scored her eighth goal for the Rangers (2-2, 0-2).

Newtown 6, Far Rockaway 1. Astrid Portillo had two goals and Camille Alexander and Maria Gomez scored a goal apiece for the Pioneers (2-0 Queens II).

Hillcrest 5, Jefferson 1. Nadine Edmond netted a hat trick and Christine Vincent added two for the Hawks (1-1) in a non-league game.

Bayside 7, Francis Lewis 1. Emily Andricosky scored all seven goals for the Commodores (2-2, 2-1 Queens I).

Townsend Harris 5, John Adams 0. Jaclyn Miccio had three goals for the Hawks (4-0, 2-0 Queens I).

Townsend Harris 5, Hillcrest 0. Kathryn Dubowski had two goals and Miccio added a goal and two assists for Townsend Harris.

Reach Associate Sports Editor Dylan Butler by e-mail at Timesledgr@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 143.

Posted 7:03 pm, October 10, 2011
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