Lewis Mills girls bounce Morgan for spot in Class M quarters
Lewis Mills junior Chloe Waldron has had two strong games to start the state tournament, including a pair of goals Wednesday.
BURLINGTON - The Lewis Mills girls soccer team is once again making a run at that elusive state championship.
Chloe Waldron scored twice and the Spartans once again dominated possession and the run of play in a 4-1 victory over No. 19 Morgan in a CIAC Class M state tournament second round matchup.
The third-seeded Spartans advance to host No. 27 New Fairfield (9-7-2) on Friday. The Rebels defeated No. 22 Northwestern, 3-1, in another second round match on Wednesday.
Waldron opened the scoring 23 minutes into the opening half. She gathered the ball near the top of the circle and with a soft first touch created space to rip a shot into the upper righthand corner to give the Spartans a 1-0 lead. It was a composed finish and just what Mills needed after getting the better of play for much of the beginning of the first half with nothing to show for it.
Jazzy Sztyler-Magee made it 2-0 for the Spartans when she slotted home a nice feed from Julia Robillard right in front of the goal.
"We are starting to fire on all cylinders," Mills coach David Francalangia said. "We are creating opportunities. We've been working on and stressing our forward runs up front and making sure those passes through the midfield are going to those holes and spaces up front and the ideas are starting to come."
Madison (9-7-2) made it a game with its lone tally with 4:56 left in the first half off a rebound.
The Spartans put the game away by playing much like they did in the first half, possessing the ball, playing combinations and making runs. Robillard converted on a shot near the top of the box off a pass from Rachel Hedden, who made a nice run past two Morgan defenders to set up the play. Waldron capped the scoring, pouncing on a loose ball in front of the goal to make it 4-1.
"The mindset of the team is very good, they were discouraged to let in that goal late in the first half but the bounced back," Francalangia said. "You can see how resilient they are, they came back and got a goal about 10 minutes into the second half and took control. Hopefully we can keep it rolling in the quarters."
Lewis Mills (16-2) has now advanced at least to the quarterfinals in five of the six state tournaments since its 2010 state final appearance. The Spartans are looking for their third trip to the state semis in five seasons. The last two seasons it has taken double overtime to eliminate the Spartans and they lost to the eventual state champion in 2012 (semis against Northwest Catholic) and 2014 (semis against East Catholic).
The Spartans have won seven straight and outscored the opposition 30-2 in that span. If they can stretch the win streak to 10, they will capture the schools first, and long awaited state title. But first a test from New Fairfield out of the SWC, which has already knocked off one Berkshire League team in the tournament.
"We are playing our best soccer right now." Francalangia said. "I know (New Fairfield) beat Northwestern 3-1 and we had someone take a look and I know some coaches around the league and can gather a little intel. But I'm not to worried about the whole scouting thing. I feel like if we play our game we are one of the best teams in Class M. So I need to focus on the girls and what they need to do and I thnk we are going to be in good shape."