Girls Soccer Wins State Title

Gretchen Lee

When PJ Petrow took over as the Saddle River Day head coach, his goal was merely to lead his squad to respectability and hopefully contend for a championship at some point during his tenure. After a tough first season, the Rebels grew last year having close games with all of the top teams in their division. However, they were unable to finish those games and lost a remarkable five matches in overtime. Those initial goals still seemed unrealistic heading into this season, but the Rebels showed the kind of fight that champions are made of. The first measuring stick came when they defeated reigning league champ Emerson, 2-1, thanks in part to a pair of impact sophomores, striker Jessica Yee and goalkeeper Livia Davidson. SRDS showed that it is certainly capable of making some noise when they went on to advance in the Bergen County Tournament where they lost in the quarterfinal.

But they weren’t done yet. They defeated Gill St. Bernard’s, 1-0 in the NJSIAA Non-Public North B semifinal, to advance to the final vs. Montclair Kimberley Academy for the section title. After a goal late in regulation by Jessica Yee tied the score and the teams remained even through two overtime periods, it was goalkeeper Livia Davidson who made her dream a reality in the penalty-kick shootout. She made two huge saves, then stepped up and converted the clinching penalty-kick as second-seeded Saddle River Day won its first Non-Public North B crown in program history with a thrilling 1-1 (3-1 PKs) finish before a record crowd at home. “I can't even believe that we're here and that this is really happening,” said Davidson. “Our team never gives up and never stops playing hard; that showed with how we played today.” The girls lost in the NJSIAA State Sectional Non-Public B championship to Rutgers Prep, 2-0.

The women’s soccer program has not had a winning season since they were members of the Prep B league in the years between 1999-2003, defeating Pennington in 2000 for the State Prep B Title in overtime play under the leadership of Coach Ray Haywood. This continued with Coach Russ Farr as the team qualified for post-season play every season and boasted talented players like Kate Galante ’01, Tatiana Mathelier ’01, goalkeeper Lauren Arredondo ’02, Danielle Weber ’02, Liz Romney ’04, and Alexis Rosker ’04.