St. Joseph girls soccer team blanks Fairfield Warde 1-0
The way the St. Joseph and Fairfield Warde girls soccer teams competed Tuesday, it would not be a surprise if they met again in 2012.
But round one went to Sabrina Toole and the Cadets.
The junior defender netted the game's only goal on a penalty kick in the 19th minute and St. Joseph held off the Mustangs 1-0 at Warde.
"We came over here and played well against a good team," St. Joseph coach Jack Nogueira said. "It was good to do that."
Molly Meehan stopped six shots for St. Joseph as it won its third straight game, improving to 7-2-1.
Warde goalkeeper Katie Brennan made seven saves -- including a diving stop on Cadets' freshman Jenna Bike in the 85th minute to keep the Mustangs within one. The Mustangs dropped their second straight after a 7-0-2 start.
"It was a hard-fought game by both sides," Warde coach Tom Cunningham said. "We made one mistake and we paid for it."
Bike's speed earned the penalty as the forward was denied a clear breakaway when a Mustangs defender tripped her in the box.
"I thought Jenna was fantastic," Nogueira said. "When she got the ball, she was very, very dangerous. It was a clear penalty."
Toole calmly stepped up and buried the penalty. As Brennan lunged to her right, the junior defender placed a groundball to the left, inside the post, giving St. Joseph a 1-0 advantage.
"I treated it as every other PK," Toole said. "I didn't let my nerves get in the way."
The Cadets kept the Mustangs scoreless from there, thanks to Meehan, Toole and the rest of St. Joseph's strong defense.
"Defensively we played great," Nogueira said.
Meehan's strong save on Warde's Nell Carpenter helped keep Warde off the board in the 45th minute.
"I thought we had a chance to get back in the game," Cunningham said. "We've got to finish on our chances, which we're struggling to do right now."
St. Joseph senior defender Rachel Barroso also preserved a goal when she made a goal-line save, booting out Kaleigh Fidaleo's shot in the 59th minute.
"I'm really proud of how we covered," Toole said. "Even when someone made a mistake, we all made sure to get back no matter what."
ST. JOSEPH 1 0-- 1
FAIRFIELD WARDE 0 0-- 0
Records: St. Joseph 7-2-1, Fairfield Warde 7-2-2; Goals: SJ--Sabrina Toole; Goalies: SJ--Molly Meehan (6 saves); FW--Katie Brennan (7); Shots: SJ--10; FW--7