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HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS' SOCCER NOTEBOOK

At Notre Dame Academy (Hingham), Sydney Comeau embraces her role as team’s primary scoring threat

Notre Dame Academy senior striker Sydney Comeau (center, No. 18) manuevers the ball past a gauntlet of Malden Catholic defenders on Wednesday. She scored a pair of goals in NDA's 9-0 rout.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe

Whenever Lola Griffin, a senior at Notre Dame Academy in Hingham, looks down field and sees soccer teammate Sydney Comeau with possession of the ball, Griffin thinks, “OK, it’s going into the back of the net.”

But for Comeau, a senior forward from Pembroke who has led NDA in scoring the past two seasons with 71 goals, 15 assists entering 2023, the thought of scoring isn’t her main focus.

As she weaves down field, working with her forward wings, and finding space to maneuver against overwhelming double- and triple-team defensive coverage, Comeau focuses on making something, anything, happen.

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“When I get into like a really good mind-set in a game — I always think about it after the game and it’s honestly just kind of a blur for me, just because I’m so into the game and so into what I’m doing and my movements,” said Comeau, who added two more goals to her season’s tally in a 9-0 win at Malden Catholic Wednesday afternoon. “But then after I feel like there’s just so much excitement.”

Though she does have an expectation to score after years of being a strong finisher on club and high school teams, the Holy Cross-bound Comeau has a bigger hope of helping her teams in whatever way she can.

“When I do score I feel really just proud to be able to help our team win, and I feel like it’s not really about particularly me scoring, but just being able to help our team as much as I can,” she said. “Whether that means being able to score, assist or even just make a good play.”

‘I’m never like ‘Sydney you have to score,’ but I think she really believes that she has that ability and she should every game.’

Notre Dame Academy soccer coach Kelly Turner, on senior forward Sydney Comeau

Notre Dame Academy senior striker Sydney Comeau, a Holy Cross commit, has held herself to a high standard as the team's scoring leader.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe

If she can’t manage to bury one in the back of the net, or register an assist, Comeau does feel disappointed, and is left with the lingering feeling as though she “could’ve gotten one.”

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NDA coach Kelly Turner sees a hunger in Comeau to score unlike most other players she has coached, including her years as an assistant at Harvard and Northeastern.

“I think having scored this many goals, she feels an obligation. I’m never like ‘Sydney you have to score,’ but I think she really believes that she has that ability and she should every game,” said Turner, who has directed NDA to a 6-2-1 start, and a No. 8 ranking in this week’s Globe Top 20 girls’ soccer poll.

“So that sets her standards so high every day, and not every kid has that.”

Sydney Comeau (second from left, No. 18) always seems to gravitate toward the ball, relying on her scoring instinct to finish at the net. She scored twice in a 9-0 rout of Malden Catholic on Wednesday.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe

But the desire to do it for the team shines through, and Turner knows that Comeau gets invaluable help from every other player on the field.

“She’s very humble, but you know, she scores in every game,” Turner said. “I think if she doesn’t score she’s disappointed but that’s just her. But if somebody else scores and she assists she’s very happy for them.”

Notre Dame has been grappling with the graduation of star midfielder Lindsay Wilson, last year’s Division 2 Player of the Year who is now at William & Mary. Ten of the team’s 11 starters returned, except Wilson, who assisted on the majority of Comeau’s goals.

“It’s definitely a hole we’re trying to fix,” Griffin said. “I don’t think there’s one person who could fill in for Lindsay Wilson . . . But I think we just need someone that can be in the midfield and just be annoying in there and run around.”

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Sydney Comeau (center, No. 18) celebrates with NDA teammate Siobahn Colin (left, No. 11) after scoring one of her two goals at Malden Catholic.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe

Junior forward Emma Connerty, has teamed up with senior forward Siobhan Colin as runners, trying to create offense.

“I’m still looking to score, because I know that’s what I’m put on the field to do,” Connerty said. “But I definitely think like, ‘OK, where are my teammates? Who am I looking for? And where can I make the best play?’”

Not one to have her mind blank during games, there are times when Connerty receives a perfectly setup ball and feels a surge of responsibility to get a point, and the added pressure suits her well.

In last year’s regular-season finale, the Cougars faced a 1-0 deficit against Grafton. Wilson made an exceptional run down the right side wing and crossed the ball to Connerty.

“She crossed it and I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, it’s coming right to me, I’ve got to put it in the net,’” Connerty said. “I was just like, ‘Here goes nothing,’ and just ran and tried as hard as I could to put it in and it went in.”

Corner kicks

▪ Danvers coach Jimmy Hinchion took note of the talent of Georgia Prouty when she was a freshman, watching her dart past her marking and create scoring opportunities. Now a junior, the Boston University commit has paced the Falcons to a 6-2 start with 13 goals and 12 assists, leading the Northeastern Conference in scoring by a wide margin.

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Also one of the state’s top runners in the 400 meters, Prouty has a well-rounded game. Physically strong and agile, Prouty defends well in addition to her scoring touch and finds teammates when double- and triple-teamed.

“She is absolutely a student of the game,” said Hinchion. “She sees the game at such a high level. She finds space on the field that other players wouldn’t even look for. The game might be high speed for some, but it’s slow for her. She’s several moves ahead of others on the field. She’s an extreme athlete.”

On a Falcons team that graduated nine seniors and six starters, Prouty has gained the respect of her teammates and opposition with her play.

▪ On Wednesday, Oct. 4, Whitman-Hanson will host Patriot League rival Scituate in a mental health awareness night. The team will be raising money to promote mental health initiatives and a scholarship. Prizes will be raffled off and instead of purchasing a ticket to the game, donations will be accepted.

Games to watch

Thursday, No. 16 Hingham at No. 7 Hanover, 4 p.m. –– University of Illinois commit Claire Murray and the Harbormen look to find their form when facing Patriot League foe Hanover, which boasts a sterling 27-1 goal differential in an unbeaten start.

Friday, Canton at No. 6 Franklin, 4 p.m. –– The potent attacking duo of Emma Cahill and Mekhala Costello look to go strike-for-strike with Anya Zub and a talented Panthers team in a Hockomock League clash.

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Friday, No. 14 Dover-Sherborn at Needham, 4 p.m. –– Ava Chiappinelli, one of the state’s premier center backs, leads a pesky Rockets squad against Tessa Broderick, Sasha Ceol. and the always game Raiders.

Friday, No. 11 Norwell at Cohasset, 4 p.m. –– A rematch of a 3-0 win for the Clippers on Sept. 21, Tess Barrett and the Skippers look to avenge a 3-0 setback from Sept. 21 against Paige Flanders and a Norwell team that has found its stride.

Friday, No. 4 Natick at Andover, 6:30 p.m. –– Two air-tight defenses lock horns for nonleague play, as Kendall Hacker and Kaitlyn LeBrun lead a high-powered Red Hawk team against Andover, which has conceded only four goals courtesy of Mikayla DeLuca and Paige Welsh handling the goaltending duties.

Correspondent Cam Kerry contributed to this story.


Lauren Thomas can be reached at lauren.thomas@globe.com. Follow her @lauren_thomas30.