Newington girls soccer to lose valuable seniors, aiming to reload entering next season

Published on Thursday, 11 November 2021 20:58
Written by TYLER HETU

@TheTylerHetu

NEWINGTON – It was a heartbreaking end of the season for Newington girls soccer in its Class LL second-round match against Fairfield Warde Wednesday afternoon.

Playing well defensively all day, the Nor’easters were tight in the defensive third and strong in goal to turn away a resilient Fairfield Warde team for 70 minutes of play. On the offensive end, while there was a bit to be desired in terms of finishing, the Nor’easters couldn’t get a go-ahead score in moments they needed.

A score in the 71st minute by Fairfield Warde put the pressure on Newington in the final 10 minutes, and they were unable to get an equalizer to force overtime. The loss was an emotional one, with the Nor’easters team bidding an emotional farewell to the season on its home field in front of a crowded spectator gallery.

For the Nor’easters, much of its defensive core will not be returning next fall. Six seniors move on from the program, which is on pace to bring back seven juniors and five sophomores, all of whom saw some varsity experience.

“The tough part is, the seniors we are missing, it’s a lot of defenders in the spine of the team,” said Newington head coach Adam Wilkinson. “The underclassmen who have been there all year, hopefully they’ve been taking things in and realize that’s what they’ve got to do to step up.”

Seniors departing the club include Brianna Norton, Giuliana Stolfi, Karlissa Zocco, Alyse Karanian, Michelle Novikova and Marliese Zocco.

Newington’s run into the postseason kicked off in September, opening the season with a 9-1 win over New Britain on Sept. 9th and then rolling to a 7-0 win over Bloomfield a few days later on the 13th. After a 2-1 loss to Glastonbury the Nor’easters closed out the season with back-to-back wins and a tie on the final day of the month, going 4-1-1 through September with a goal differential of 26-3.

Through October the Nor’easters maintained its success, lot losing a game through the month. The defense allowed four goals as the offense put up 15, leading to a record of 5-0-2.

A 2-1 win over Tolland ended the regular season at 10-2-3 for Newington, who earned the fifth seed in Class LL play. A first-round bye was earned before the loss in the second round.

To get back to the second round next year will be a challenge, but Wilkinson feels what the team doesn’t have in traditional Class LL size, it makes up for in talent and skill.

“We’ve got plenty of talent in the program. We are the smallest school in Class LL, and sometimes it’s tough to compete against schools that have double the amount of girls,” said Wilkinson. “But with regards to the quality of talent, we should be able to, I’m not saying seamlessly, but we should be able to step up next year and have another good year,”



Posted in New Britain Herald, Newington on Thursday, 11 November 2021 20:58. Updated: Thursday, 11 November 2021 21:01.