GIRLS SOCCER: Southington running into recurring plot line

SOUTHINGTON — Southington girls soccer coach Mike Linehan said his team was a little frustrated after collecting its fourth straight tie and sixth overall on the season.

Frustrated, perhaps, but not heartbroken.

Southington junior Jess Carr scored her second goal of the game in the 65th minute to secure a 2-2 CCC West stalemate with Farmington at Joseph Fontana Field on Tuesday afternoon.

“If you want a goal and we are on a set piece, she’s deadly,” Linehan said of Carr. “Everybody is beginning to know that and she’s getting double- and triple-teamed. We need to create space for her and a number of our goals are coming on corners.’

Both of Carr’s goals were headers on corner kicks delivered by Maya Wroblewski.

“I wanted those goals; all of my goals have come off of headers,” Carr said. “We had trouble in the beginning of the season because we have such a young team. Practically, our whole lineup is freshmen and sophomores and it took a while for us to get it going, but I think we are playing a lot better now than we did at the beginning of the season.

“We just have to finish our goals and our chances. We just need to get over our mistakes and they will stop scoring goals on us. We are coming together.”

Southington (5-1-6, 2-1-2 CCC West) scored a 4-2 victory in the first meeting with Farmington (4-4-4, 1-2-2) back on Sept. 21. Southington’s only defeat of the season was at home to Glastonbury, 2-1, on Sept. 25.

On Tuesday, Southington and Farmington were tied 1-1 at the half after both scored on a corner kick. Southington struck first with a Carr header on the far right post that went just over the line.

In the 26th minute, Farmington junior Carly Passaro headed home a corner kick from senior Sabrina Krause.

Both teams had four shots on goal in the first half. One great chance saw Farmington’s Elizabeth Neri make a big move in the box to get some space, but her shot was collected by Southington sophomore keeper Margaret Miller (8 saves).

Farmington controlled much of the first 10 minutes of the second half with three different scoring chances during that span. The first was a shot by Julia Leary in the 43rd minute. A minute later, Carr headed away a dangerous corner kick into the box.

Krause attempted to put in a cross from Hannah Sams. Miller jumped on that one.

The flow of play shifted. In the 53rd minute, Southington senior forward Nina Muir shook two defenders and had the Farmington goalie beat, but her shot hit the bottom of the crossbar and spit out.

“Nina gives us our most opportunities,” Linehan said. “She works extremely hard and doesn’t get rewarded for the work she puts in. She rattled that ball off the crossbar.

“In the last four games, there hasn’t been one thing we asked of her that she didn’t do. She’s getting opportunities. I wish for her to have that success because she really deserves it.”

Farmington went up 2-1 just one minute after Muir’s golden opportunity. Neri scored unassisted from close range.

The Carr-Wroblewski combination produced the equalizer for Southington in the 65th minute. Wroblewski served it into the box right on Carr’s head and the captain put it in.

Riley Prozzo had a shot for Southington in the 72nd minute. Carr had one in the 75th minute that went wide left.

Sage Carmody had Southington’s last best chance. That came in the 77th minute.

Linehan praised the work of Prozzo and Sofia Scalise, his starting outside backs.

At the other end, Farmington goalie Margaret Huelin made 10 saves.

“This was an up and down game, but Southington is always very tough,” Farmington coach Max Fantl said. “That’s also a team we could see in the tournament, so it was a good test and another good game.”

Linehan said his girls are training hard every day in practice.

“This tie was a little different than others because this is a quality side,” Linehan said with a nod to Farmington. “When we tied some earlier games, it didn’t feel like a tie. We expected better. Against Farmington, they are tournament-ready and we are getting tournament-ready. That was a tournament-type game.

“Against this team, the girls were pleased with a tie. But as coaches, you are never pleased with a tie.”

Linehan said the Blue Knights just have to finish more opportunities.

Looking ahead, the Knights are already training for penalty kicks in the postseason. They have their top 5 and top 10 shooters mapped out. The way things are going, Southington will see plenty of more tight games.

Next up: at Avon on Friday.

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