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Baldwin sitting on playoff fence

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A couple of well-played losses has Baldwin on the bubble to qualify for the Nassau Class A girls’ lacrosse playoffs.

The Lady Bruins will look to recover from three-goal defeats to Plainview and New Hyde Park by defeating Hicksville in the regular-season finale to remain in playoff contention with two games remaining. Baldwin sits at 7-4 in Conference IV.

“It’s difficult to tell if we’ll make the playoffs or not,” coach Rebecca LaFlare said. “It’s probably going to come down to the last day. It was tough to lose to Plainview and New Hyde Park. The outcomes weren’t what we wanted but they were both great, fun games to be a part of.”

Baldwin came up short against Plainview for a second time this spring, dropping a 13-10 decision on May 25 despite seven points, including five goals, from senior midfielder Bri Benoit. A week later, the Lady Bruins went toe-to-toe with New Hyde Park until the final seven minutes and lost 12-9. Benoit and senior attack Tess Ferguson had three goals apiece.

“The New Hyde Park game was back-and-forth,” LaFlare said. “They did a nice job keeping the ball away from us at the end and killing the clock. We’ve grown from each loss and we’re looking forward to playing them again.”

The Lady Bruins were scheduled to conclude the regular season with a trip to New Hyde Park on Tuesday, after press time.

Sandwiched between both of their losses to Plainview were victories over Roslyn (9-8 in overtime on May 18) and Clarke (12-2 on May 22.) Baldwin trailed Roslyn by four at halftime when LaFlare made some adjustments on the draw control that paid off with three goals from Benoit, including the game winner a mere 10 seconds into OT, and key faceoff wins by junior Yedelin Santos.

“It was the first overtime game for all of our girls,” LaFlare said. “We hadn’t played one in years.”

Ferguson, Toyin Green, Kirsten Mahler, Amanda Antoine and Sophia Smyth also scored for Baldwin, which got a strong performance from junior goaltender Maia Goveia. “Maia has kept us in every game,” LaFlare said. “She put in a lot of work since she was our JV goalie as a freshman and it’s really paid off.”

The defense in front of Goveia is led by seniors Leana Solomon and Tiara Paulas. Ferguson and Mahler, a junior, are the top attackers and rank second and third on the team in scoring, respectively. Ferguson, who brings high-level skills and is the epitome of the program, LaFlare said, has 21 goals and 12 assists. Mahler is the most-improved on the roster and has 15 goals.

Beniot (30 goals, 13 assists) is a dynamic two-way player, LaFlare said, who spearheads the midfield along with Green and senior Kourtney Bobb. The latter leads the team in groundballs and ignites the transition game.