Mary Neilon HOF 1.jpeg

Former longtime Ellicottville girls soccer coach Mary Neilon is joined by her husband Geno (left), son Vinnie and his girlfriend Kayla Beyer (right) family members and the Ellicottville Eagle mascot after receiving her plaque for induction to the New York State Girls Soccer Hall of Fame on Saturday in Niskayuna.

NISKAYUNA — The Ellicottville girls soccer team traveled east to honor its former longtime coach and play in a state-wide tournament this weekend.

Ellicottville played two games in the New York State Girls Soccer Hall of Fame Tournament on Saturday and Sunday. Between games, the team saw former coach Mary Neilon’s induction to the state girls soccer hall of fame.

The Eagles were initially invited to play in the tournament in 2020, when Neilon was set to be inducted. But that ceremony was postponed to this fall, so the Eagles played in the Albany area tournament this year instead.

“It really was an awesome opportunity for our girls to head out to the Albany area and play,” Ellicottville coach Tammy Eddy said. “Probably the most awesome experience was sitting in the auditorium and having some of her former players, this is her third year being retired but having four or five of her former players on my team there in addition to the rest of the team there to cheer on, in addition to our parents and coaches, it really was a special experience to be able to witness that. That’s never happened for our school district before, I’m not sure how often it happens in our area. It was awesome to be there to support her for that.”

On Sunday, Ellicottville (2-3) closed out its tournament trip with a 2-1 loss to Berlin/New Lebanon. Brooke Butler had the Eagles’ goal.

Ellicottville was without two starters for the tournament due to injuries suffered before the trip. Eddy said her team struggled with a new lineup and short rest before Saturday’s game, a 6-1 loss (see below).

“Today’s game went better,” she said Sunday. “We kind of adjusted, I feel like we were well rested. (But) the main reason for us going out there was for Mary.”

Poland 6, Ellicottville 1

CLIFTON PARK — Elliocttville lost its opener of the hall of fame tournament on Saturday. Jocelyn Wyatt had the lone goal for the Eagles. Poland piled on four second-half goals after leading 2-1 at halftime.

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