WATERBURY -- Northwest Catholic defeated St Joseph 4-1 on Friday in the girls soccer Class M final at Municipal Stadium. The Cadets found themselves trailing 2-0 just 11 minutes into the contest after goals by Anne Higgins and Jessica Fontaine.
St. Joseph coach Jack Nogueira said giving Northwest Catholic such an early lead was something that was going to be hard for his team to overcome.
"We made some critical mistakes," Nogueira said, "especially those first two goals. And once you do that against a very good offensive team already it's very hard to come back."
The Cadets held Northwest Catholic scoreless for the remaining 29 minutes of the first half sending them to the break down two goals.
They put pressure on Northwest Catholic numerous times to begin the second half before freshman Marissa Grasso scored with 29:58 left in the game to draw the Cadets within one.
"We came back and made it 2-1, I thought at that point we had a chance," Nogueira said.
Just over 11 minutes later, Fontaine scored for the second time off a deflection just in front of the goal to put the Cadets down 3-1.
"The third goal really sealed it up," Nogueira said.
Northwest Catholic added a fourth goal by Bailey Julian with 12 minutes left to leave no doubt of what the outcome would be.
Nogueira gave praise to Northwest Catholic.
"Northwest Catholic is a very, very good team," he said.
"Well-deserving. They were better than us today, they made less mistakes and they certainly capitalized on our mistakes."
Nogueira then put the Cadets' 18-3-2 season into perspective.
"I'm very pleased with what we accomplished," he said. "We were FCIAC champions (actually co-champions with Greenwich), we made it to the finals of class M and lost to a very good team. We only lose two senior starters and our better players are all coming back. I'm looking forward to next year."
ST. JOSEPH...............................................0 1--1
NORTHWEST CATHOLIC.............................2 2--4
Records: St. Joseph 18-3-2; Northwest Catholic 19-0-1. Goals: NW--Jessica Fontaine 2, Anne Higgins, Bailey Julian; SJ--Marissa Grasso. Assists: SJ--Jenna Bike; NW--Jessica Fontaine, Michelle Medina, Anne Higgins. Goalies: SJ--Molly Meehan (6 saves); NW--Kelsey Dornfried (7). Shots: SJ--15; NW--17.