Action sports Spotlight - O-State Soccer

By Brendan O'Reilly

July 22, 2010 Updated Oct 30, 2007 at 6:40 PM EST

A LOT CAN HAPPEN IN 10 YEARS, BUT ONE THING THAT NEVER HAPPENED THE PAST DECADE WAS THE ONEONTA STATE WOMEN'S SOCCER TEAM LOSING A CONFERENCE MATCH. THE RED DRAGONS WON A NATIONAL RECORD 101 STRAIGHT SUNYAC GAMES, A STREAK DATING BACK TO 1999. THE STREAK FINALLY ENDED EARLIER THIS SEASON AGAINST PLATTSBURGH.
Senior forward Mary Velan says, "When we hit a hundred, the team that started it, we met all of them and it was just really great to see that 10 years ago is when the streak started and we're part of this team that made history."
Head coach Liz McGrail says, "This program was built on hard work and the team effort and it's always been about that more than it really has been about the streak."
THE FIRST-YEAR COACH McGRAIL KNOWS ABOUT THE O-STATE TRADITION BETTER THAN ANYONE. SHE WAS ON THE TEAM IN '99 WHEN THE STREAK STARTED AND GRADUATED AS THE ALL-TIME LEADING SCORER IN SCHOOL HISTORY. SHE WAS STILL NUMBER ONE UNTIL THIS YEAR WHEN HER OWN PLAYER MARY VELAN BROKE THE RECORD.
"Mary is an exceptional player that doesn't come around very often," says McGrail. "She's fun to watch and I couldn't have picked a better person to break my record."
Velan says, "It was nice because we went to the same high school. She graduated about 10 years before so I couldn't break her record in high school so I had to do it in college."
BOTH WOMEN ARE FROM STAMFORD, A TOWN OF ABOUT ONE-THOUSAND IN DELAWARE COUNTY... A TOWN THAT'S SERVED AS A BREEDING GROUND FOR O-STATE SOCCER STARS.
"Brooke Davis, who was MVP of the National Championship team, was also from Stamford so it must be something in the water, it's a small town. It's kind of neat."
IN A SEASON FULL OF MILESTONES, ADDING A SECOND NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP TO THE RED DRAGON TRADITION WOULD BE THE MOST PERFECT ENDING. IN ONEONTA, JUSTIN HOROWITZ, ACTION SPORTS.

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