AVON - It was another great match between two very even teams competing for the fourth spot in CCC Region B as the Southington boys soccer team took its second win of the season over Avon with a 3-2 victory on Tuesday.
The Falcons struck first in the first half after a cross was mishandled by Southington goalkeeper, Ryan Lunn. The ball was not cleared and rattled around in the 6-yard box before being put home by an Avon forward.
Avon controlled the run of play for much of the first half. But with 7:44 remaining in the half, Southington midfielder Matt Morgan played a perfect through ball for his fellow junior Liam Schroeder. Schroeder was able to hold off a recovering defender and bury a right footed rocket to the left of the Avon goalkeeper, Michael Zelazny.
Just as the Blue Knights thought they found their footing, Avon struck again. Southington lost the ball outside the top of the box and was unable to close down the Avon player who was able to get a clean shot away past a diving Lunn.
Southington came out a different team in the second half, showing a lot more intensity and desire. 15 minutes into the second half, their hard work paid off. This time the Blue Knights strikers combined for the goal. Senior Cole Marek was able to chest a lofted ball to an open Schroeder who thundered a half-volley, once again, to the left of Zelazny.
Both teams generated chances as the half went on - both teams struck the outside of the post on direct free kicks. It was Schroeder who took home the Election Day spoils, bagging his hat-trick with just 2:20 remaining in the contest. Sophomore winger Derek Gajewski found space in the box after Ryan Salzillo beat his defender and slotted him a pass. Gajewski drew the goalkeeper off his line and attracted all the attention, then made the unselfish decision to lay a pass across the box to a wide open Schroeder who simply had to tap the ball across the line.
Southington’s last regular season match is Thursday evening at home against Farmington. For the time being, the Blue Knights have a hold on fourth, which would earn a trip to the Regional Championship mini-tournament.
Lewis Mills 3, Bristol Eastern 2: The Lancers suffered their first loss since Oct. 6 on Tuesday and ended the Spartans five-game losing streak in what was also their first win of the season.
Scott Groleau drilled two goals in the first half to give Lewis Mills a sturdy lead after 40 minutes.
Eastern cut the score in half early in the second half when Andre Gonzalez scored from the right side following a Conner Policarpio cross. The Lancers’ offense pressured Lewis Mills, but goalie Ryan Mayes handled 9 saves cleanly.
Chris King secured the win for the Spartans by lofting a ball into the Eastern net for the eventual game winner with three minutes remaining. Adam Borry scored Eastern's second goal less than a minute later. Eastern's Nate Diloreto made 8 saves.
"Mills came out hard and fast and won most balls," Eastern coach Bill Sweet said. "In the second half we responded, but Mills did a good job of keeping us from that third goal."
The Lancers return to action after one sleep and host Farmington on Wednesday.
Bristol Central 7, New Britain 0:It was deja vu for the Bristol Central girls soccer team Tuesday in its match against New Britain. The Rams plastered a 7-0 victory on the Hurricanes for the second time this season to bump their record to 4-5-2 while New Britain is yet to come closer than three goals away from winning a game and fall to 0-11.
Rachel Wygant finished with a hat trick to lead Central’s scoring while Jenna Lowe, Bella Bosco, Abby Hansen and Emma Quintero each scored one including the first of the senior Quintero’s high school career.
Gabby DeFilippis posted her second clean sheet of the season with the other also coming against New Britain, a team that has only scored three goals this season.
Southington 3, Avon 2
Halftime: 2-1 Avon
Goals: Liam Schroeder (S) 3.
Assists: Matt Morgan (S), Cole Marek (S), Derek Gajewski (S).
Records: Southington 4-4-3, Avon 4-4-2.
Lewis Mills 3, Bristol Eastern 2
At Bristol Eastern
Halftime: 2-0 Lewis Mills
Goals: Scott Groleau (LM) 2, Andre Gonzalez (BE), Chris King (LM), Adam Borry (BE).
Assists: Conner Policarpio (BE).
Saves: Ryan Mayes (LM) 9, Nate DiLoreto (BE) 8.
Records: Lewis Mills 1-6-3, Bristol Eastern 4-2-3.
Bristol Central 7, New Britain 0
At New Britain
Goals: Jenna Lowe (BC), Bella Bosco (BC), Abby Hansen (BC), Emma Quintero (BC), and Rachel Wygant (BC) 3.
Assists: Bella Bosco (BC), Ashlee Crumrine (BC), Abby Hansen (BC).
Records: Bristol Central 4-5-2, New Britain 0-11.