TORRINGTON — The Naugatuck girls soccer team came into its own with a five-game winning streak to end September and put the Greyhounds in the hunt for the top spot in the NVL.
October has been a bit more challenging.
The Greyhounds went into Monday night’s matchup with Torrington 1-1-2 over their past last games.
The Greyhounds had to settle for a 2-2 tie with St. Paul last Friday. Haley Boulanger and Emma Sonski scored goals for Naugy. Sydney O’Donnell made nine saves.
“We had a real tough one last Friday against St. Paul,” Naugatuck head coach Lisa Mariano said. “They had us down 2-0 at the half. I’m so proud of the way the girls responded scoring two quick goals in the second half. Our defense allowed just two shots in the second half.”
“We are down four girls, but we didn’t play with a lot of energy,” Mariano added. “A few girls did, but the entire team is going to need to pick it up or we will be in trouble in the league and state tournaments.”
Naugatuck responded on a raw, chilly night in Torrington on Monday by pulling out a tough 2-0 win over the Raiders to improve to 9-2-2 on the season.
The defensive unit of Catarina Rego, Erin Doris, Bridget Rosikiewicz and Sofia Marques kept the Raiders from crossing the 40 yard line for much of the game as Naugy owned a 25-2 edge in shots on goal.
“We didn’t have too many pluses in the game, but our defense has been solid,” Mariano said. “Hopefully we will pick it back up offensively knowing what we have ahead of us.”
Naugatuck controlled most of the possession throughout the game with Alyana Sosa steering the offense into the Torrington end all game long. Sonski, Mia Rotatori and Alissa McNeil charged into the box looking for opportunities, but most of the shots were right in the bread basket as Torrington keeper Abby McCarthy made 23 stops in the net.
Macie Best, Abigail Pruchnicki and Makayla Teixeira came up with their share of 50/50 balls over the middle to keep Torrington from mounting an attack. When the Raiders did get the advantage, the Naugy defense closed in and O’Donnell only had to fend off two shots on goal.
As the scoreless game reached the 20 minute mark of the second half, Mariano brought two freshmen back into the game, and that provided a spark.
At 17:05 to play, Sosa steered a pass inside the box. The tenacious Aalyiah Henry received the pass, stepped around the defender and drilled one to the far post for a 1-0 lead.
About two minutes later, Noelle Jacobi wound up from 30 yards out and sent one over the head of McCarthy to up the margin at 2-0.
That was all the goals needed as the Greyhounds held onto possession for the remainder of the game.
Naugatuck will host Oxford on Friday at 3:45 p.m. Next week, the Greyhounds will conclude the regular season at Woodland on Monday and home versus Watertown on Wednesday.