WILKES-BARRE – Some things never seem to happen.
You never have all six winning numbers on your lottery ticket. You never find the end of the rainbow. And Holy Redeemer never beats Crestwood in field hockey.
Holy Redeemer scored three goals in the final 22 minutes to defeat the Comets 3-1 at Hollenback Park.
"I've never beaten them in my whole career, even when I was playing," said fourth-year Holy Redeemer coach Juliann DeFalco, who played at Coughlin before serving as a coach at Bishop O'Reilly, GAR and with the Royals.
The Royals (7-0) got a big game from Greta Ell, who scored the game-winning goal and set up the other two Redeemer goals. Her flick from about 8 yards out on a penalty corner with 18:30 remaining hit the back of the net about waist high.
"She really did have a great game," Royals sophomore Rachel Platko said of Ell. "I think we really picked it up in the second half and she was a leader for us."
Platko should know, as she tied the game in the 38th minute. Morgan Mancini played the ball to the edge of the circle and centered to Ell, who was able to get inside the Comets defense. She sent the ball ahead to Platko in traffic.
From there, the sophomore worked her stick free and slammed the ball past a pair of Comets for her second goal of the season.
"She (Ell) sent it up and I just hit it in," Platko said. "I didn't think it was going to go in. It felt good because we were getting frustrated (in the first half) not getting any shots off."
Crestwood (8-1) had held Redeemer without a shot for the first 33 minutes of the game.
Trailing 2-1, Crestwood challenged for the tying goal. Morgan Kile had a nifty tip of an Elizabeth Dessoye blast stopped by Royals keeper Selina Malacari two minutes after Ell's goal. Dessoye had another opportunity ticketed for the goal batted out of the air by Mancini with 2:38 remaining.
"All 11 girls on the field contributed to this win," DeFalco said. "But if I had to give out a player of the game, there would be three. They are my unsung heroes.
"Alexis Lewis (who stopped a handful of rushes up the wing late in the game), I can't give her enough credit. Morgan Mancini, who formerly played at Crestwood, was all over the place. And Sara Altemose had a great game."
Dessoye scored her fourth of the season in the 10th minute to give Crestwood a 1-0 lead. On a corner, Marissa Surdy had her shot deflect right to Chandler Ackers, who sent a pass to Dessoye before the Royals could mark her.
"All the credit goes to Holy Redeemer," Crestwood coach Elvetta Gemski said. "They gained momentum and we weren't able to regroup. We didn't sustain (a territorial advantage) as we did in the first half."
With 13 seconds left, Altemose scored her first of the season on a shot from a step inside the circle. The Royals finished 2-of-6 on penalty corners.
Holy Redeemer 3, Crestwood 1
First half: 1. CRE, Elizabeth Dessoye (Chandler Ackers), 20:54. Second half: 2. HR, Rachel Platko (Greta Ell), 21:31; 3. HR, Ell (Mallory Kusakavitch), 18:30; 4. HR, Sara Altemose (Ell), :13.
Shots: CRE 5, HR 6; Saves: CRE 3 (Dallas Kendra), HR 1 (Selina Malacari); Corners: CRE 5, HR 6.