A year ago almost to the day, Seabreeze's girls soccer team defeated Flagler Palm Coast for the first time in 11 seasons. On Saturday, Nov. 19, the Sandcrabs made it three in a row against the Bulldogs with a 3-0 victory at FPC's Sal Campanella Stadium.
"They're the best team in the area," FPC coach Pete Hald said. "Last year they were the best team in the (Five Star Conference)."
All three Seabreeze victories over the Bulldogs were shutouts. The Sandcrabs won 5-0 on Nov. 20, 2021 and 4-0 on Jan. 11, 2022 in a Five Star Conference tournament game.
"Their possession was better than us," Hald said after last week's game. "We didn't win a lot of soccer balls that could have put the possession to our favor."
Freshman Olivia Chase gave Seabreeze a 1-0 lead in the first half with her first high school goal.
"I was really happy to see her get her first goal. She's going to be an exceptional player," Seabreeze coach Eli Freidus said.
Kylie Watson put Seabreeze up 2-0 with 26:46 left in the game. Annabel Thistle made it 3-0 eight minutes later. Goalkeeper Avery Dellinger saved five shots to earn the shutout.
Seabreeze improved to 1-3, while FPC fell to 2-2. The Sandcrabs opened the season with losses to Fleming Island, a regional finalist last season; Creekside, the 2022 Class 7A state champion; and Ponte Vedra, the 2021 Class 5A state champ.
"We have a tough schedule," Freidus said. "I might have overdone it."
"Our speed of play was good. Ponte Vedra was so fast and so strong, I felt like it helped us today."
— ELI FREIDUS, Seabreeze girls soccer coach
The schedule doesn't get any easier with games against Bartram Trail (Nov. 28) and Oviedo (Nov. 30) up next. Both teams are undefeated. Bartram won the Class 7A state championship in 2020 and 2021.
Trying to keep up with Ponte Vedra in a 4-0 loss on Nov. 18 yielded positive results against FPC, Freidus said.
"Our speed of play was good. Ponte Vedra was so fast and so strong, I felt like it helped us today," Freidus said.
Watson, who also had an assist, led a dominant midfield, while Morgan Long helped spearhead the defense.
"Our back three played great. Our midfield possessed the ball the whole game," Freidus said.
The Bulldogs, down 1-0 at halftime while playing against the wind, felt like they were in fairly good position heading into the second half, Hald said.
"We played well enough to make it a game," he said. "Then we gave up that goal early in the second half. We got beat to the ball a lot."
The Bulldogs were coming off a 7-0 win over Ridge Community on Nov. 18. Senior Emma Swearingen had three goals and freshman Isabella Kummernes had two goals in the win. FPC hosts Atlantic on Monday, Nov. 28.
FPC defeated Seabreeze in the JV game, 3-1.