Cadets defeat Eagles in battle of unbeatens

A pair of unbeaten soccer teams took the pitch when coach Daniel Uhrlass’ Trumbull High Eagles played host to coach Jack Nogueria’s St. Joseph Cadets at McDougall Stadium on Sept. 30.

“St. Joe’s is outstanding,” Uhrlass said after his team fell to 4-1-2, after the 7-0-1 Cadets won a 3-0 FCIAC decision. “Physically, they were superior to us tonight. So it was hard for us to get behind them. They defended very well.”

St. Joseph keeper Molly Meehan was tested only a handful of times, and made three stops, as Alex Waignegger, Cori Scales, Sabrina Toole, Sara Chile and Adrienne Williams made it especially difficult for Trumbull forwards to find space to deliver.

Eagle keeper Maggie Parisi (7 saves) had to be on her toes throughout, despite ample protection from defensive standouts Alyka Lara, Caroline Crosley, Lauren Coty and Kyriaki Marinos.

St. Joseph’s Jenna Bike helped craft the Cadets first goal with a well-placed cross from along the sideline, which Sam Grasso headed in at the 20:41 mark of the first half.

The Eagles best chance to tie the game came with 6:31 remaining before the break.

Kerrigan Loughman put the ball over the top to Kendall Szulimowski, who had one step on her defender and rocketed a blast from 18 yards to the left of Meehan, who used both hands to deflect the blast.

Scales was there to clear the rebound before Julia Teixeira could pounce.

St. Joseph looked to answer in the final minute, with Bike passing to Leah Lewis, who sent the ball toward the far post. Grasso’s sliding kick was knocked aside by Parisi.

Nogueria was anxious for his team to extend its halftime lead.

“I was still a little worried at that point, but once we got the second goal, it freed us up to get the third one,” he said.

“We’re very hard to contain. If a team doesn’t get a goal on us early and then back up and allows us to play, we’re very hard to handle.”

Trumbull’s midfield, led by Nicole Schwartz, Julia Lisi and Szulimowski, took on the Cadets’ Lewis, Waizenegger, Julia Marino and Lindsey Savko, for 50-50 balls.

St. Joseph got its second goal at 14:50 of the second session, and once again it was Bike igniting the offense.

The sophomore struck a cross that cleared Parisi’s leap, and Lewis was there to tap it inside the far post.

Just two-plus minutes later, the Cadets made it 3-0.

Grasso had a nice run, before the senior unloaded a shot that Parisi parried away — only to find Marino waiting to knock it into the net.

“This is one of the biggest margins of victory ever in this rivalry,” said Uhrlass, whose team upended the Cadets by a goal last season. “They beat us pretty soundly, so hats off to them.”

Nogueria said, “Today we played well. We clicked and played our (brand of) soccer. We’re in a situation where three or four girls can score goals, not just one person.”