They began playing soccer together about a decade ago on the natural grass fields of the Grove Street Playground and beside the hockey rink where they just wanted to kick the ball. Then came town teams, learning the game and being selected to be on traveling squads before they first stepped onto Harris Field.
As high schoolers, they suffered their share of heartbreaking losses but were on the team that won the Division 2 North sectional last year and was a nationally-ranked team.
On Monday afternoon, those girls, now seniors and the backbone of a Belmont High School Girls' Soccer team readying for the post-season, were honored on Senior Day: Emma Teach, Izzy Goldstein, Mary Ellen Caruso, Joanna Albert, Hannah Silverfine, Nina Perrotta, Menna Fernald and Stacey Brandt
Flowers were presented to the girls and their parents, their names were announced and they had their photo taken before their final regular season game of their high school career and, for many, their final game playing organized soccer (although Belmont's record should allow them a least one home tournament game.)
And they would leave Harris winners, coming back against a well-coached Woburn High School team, 3-1. It is the same score Belmont defeated the Tanners when they first played in Woburn on Sept. 26.
But it was the Tanners who struck first and quickly as senior forward Erin Marshall took the ball at midfield on the counter attack and raced to the Marauders' penalty area before hitting a shot that floated over Belmont's Nina Perrotta and into the net in the third minute of the first half.
Despite having the majority of the play for the first 20 minutes, Belmont was unable to get a decent shot at Woburn sophmore goalie Courtney Davis while Woburn peppered Perrotta with three.
While Maruader Kara Fischer was a danger upfront, Tanners defense lead by seniors Katy Knight and Colleen O'Melia found ways to disrupt Belmont's movement forward.
But eventually Belmont did strike and do so twice in less than a minute: first through a header by Izzy Goldstein from Julia Russo at 7:31 and then Charlotte Alexander received a pass from Emma Teach on a two-on-one and slotted it into the right side of the net passed a diving Davis at 6:44 in the half.
And it was Teach, from Joanna Albert, who iced the game with about eight minutes remaining by rounding Davis at the top of the penalty area and then calmly putting the ball into the open net.
At 9-3-3, Belmont will try to go to double digits in wins when they travel to Lexington on Wednesday, Oct. 26, hoping to play better than they did in the 2-0 drubbing the Minutemen laid on them a few weeks ago.
The Tanners, at 6-7-1, will need to win out the rest of the season to make the post season.