Wilton Soccer Association’s (“WSA”) U15 girls and boys soccer teams closed out their respective seasons and WSA careers on a high note, earning wins earlier this month.
“Every year another great group of Wilton players and families complete their WSA journeys. This class was fun to watch and a great example of what is possible when you play the game you love, for your hometown team and with a common purpose. We are excited for all of these players as they move on to Wilton High School,” Dave Loughran, WSA volunteer director of travel soccer, said.
Wilton Girls U15 Roll Over Darien, 4-1
The Girls U15 Blue team finished another successful season on Sunday, June 13 with a 4-1 win over the team’s rival Darien. The Wilton players controlled the game on both offense and defense in a commanding final performance. Goals from Kate Lane (3) and Anna Coppola (1) put the Blue-and-White up early and extended the lead throughout the game. The defense kept Darien at bay the entirety of the game, yielding only one goal against the run of play.
The girls’ season started with tough losses to top-ranked Weston and Shelton, but the team quickly came together to post four wins against Fairfield, Stamford, Bethel, Darien and a hard-fought tie against Ridgefield. The team also advanced to the CT Cup quarterfinals with a 6-0 win over Ridgefield before falling to finalist Tolland in a closely contested match.
Coach Thomas Connolly had high praise for his players.
“The WSA girls soccer program is known for great classes of soccer players year in and year out. This one is no different,” he said. “They played hard and for each other each practice and game, I think they will do great things in high school on and off the field.”
Wilton Boys U15 Top Shelton, 2-1
The Boys Wilton U15 team showed up to Capewell Park in Shelton determined to put forth a full team effort in its final match. The game saw both teams battle for possession and trade chances before the waning minutes of the first half when Shelton grabbed a 1-0 lead.
The Wilton boys showed resolve early in the second half, pushing forward and maintaining steady pressure on Shelton’s defense. About midway through the half, Avi Spiro Wilson drew a foul outside of the box within striking distance. Liam Christ’s free-kick service fell into a dangerous position in front of the goal, where it bounced around and after a scramble was confidently punched into the net by Brian Sallese.
As the clock wore down, play became frenetic with both sides searching for the game-winner. With five minutes remaining, Wilton dispossessed Shelton of the ball in their opponent’s defensive third and quickly sought to counter attack. A few Wilton passes eventually led to a through ball up the left wing that sprung Jack Vermeulen into the open field. He confidently slid the game-winner past the keeper into the net’s lower right corner. The celebration ensued and the clock expired just minutes later, giving Wilton the satisfying, 2-1 victory.
The boys finished the season 5-2-1, scoring 30 goals and conceding only a dozen on the season.
Outstanding defensive play all year was anchored by Mason Andrews, Reed O’Neill, Jack Barker, Curt Brichkowski and Noah Levy. The midfielders of Spiro-Wilson, Sallese, Evan Lalor, Christ, Andrew Partenza, Andrew Mims, Tyler Jackson, Warren Hamilton and Or Eisdorfer worked the possession game for Wilton. On offense, Henry Mangum, Bob Prather, Ryan Miller and Vermeulen kept the pressure high on opposing defenses each game. Will Knudsen held down the goal, recording multiple shutout wins on the season.
Coach Arty Hilario described this team as one of the most satisfying to lead, having seen the team come together and improve with each match. “Their work ethic and desire to improve and play for each of their teammates made this group a pleasure to coach. They will all no doubt do well in high school next year.”
Wilton Soccer Association teams for 2021-2022 seasons are forming now. For more information please visit www.wiltonsoccer.org and to register www.wiltonsoccer.com.
Front row (l-r): Avi Wilson-Spiro, Curt Brichkowski, Bob Prather, Jack Barker, Will Knudsen, Ryan Miller, Evan Lalor, Andrew Partenza, Brian Sallese, Or Eisdorfer. Back row (l-r): Warren Hamilton, Andrew Mims, Noah Levy, Reed O’Neill, Mason Andrews, Jack Vermuelen, Liam Christ, Tyler Jackson, Henry Mangum, Coach Arty Hilario.