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Season for the ages

The Eldred girls soccer team got a rousing sendoff from the student body, staff and family members as they headed up to Cortland to face defending state champion Poland in the state semifinals. The Lady Yellow Jackets, who had won their first Section IX championship since 1986, then made more history by defeating Oppenheim/Ephratah/St. Johnsville in the regional finals. Poland downed Eldred by the score of 4-0.
Photo by Richard A. Ross, sportsinsightsny.com

By Richard A Ross
November 20, 2013

Cheered on by adoring fans including fellow students, staff and of course, their family members, the Eldred Lady Yellow Jacket soccer team boarded a bus bound for the state semifinals in Cortland hoping to continue their historic ride. After defeating Livingston Manor 3-2 with a pair of goals in a minute and a half to win their first Section IX title since 1986, the Eldred juggernaut notched a 2-1 regional final win over Oppenheim/Ephratah/St. Johnsville on a late goal by Jordan Lepes to advance to its first-ever state final four.

Eldred was defeated by defending state champion Poland of Section Three by the score of 4-0 to end its glorious season at 10-8-1. But this year’s run is hopefully a forerunner of future success, as the Lady Yellow Jackets under the savvy watch of Coach J.J. Gass return 14 players next season, including its top three scorers—Lyndzee Kelty, Jordan Lepes and Melissa McGonagle—as well as standout keeper Jenna Burns. Eldred will graduate six seniors, three of whom were starters.

Eldred aspires to become more like Poland, the team that ousted them, now that they know what it takes to advance even further. Kudos to members of the Eldred girls soccer team. They made school history while bringing pride to the community, county and Section IX. For an album of photos from the sendoff, visit www.sportsinsights.smugmug.com