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Girls Soccer Wins State Championship for Third Year in a Row

Lyme-Old Lyme defeats Holy Cross 2- 1 for Class S state title.

(Photo: Anna Donato)

(Photo: Anna Donato)

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Things got off to a shaky start for LOLHS Girls Soccer on Saturday’s Class S state final against Holy Cross. With varsity fixtures Kaylee Armenia and Lydia Tinnerello absent, the Lady Wildcats looked weaker than usual coming into the biggest game of the season. Star midfielder Keelin Hurtt still injured, and Maddie Ouellette playing with a broken arm, there were some doubts over whether Lyme-Old Lyme could pull out a third consecutive state championship. Despite these setbacks, the Lady Wildcats came back from behind to take the game to overtime and seal their fate as state champions once again.

Holy Cross came out the stronger team in the first half. Nine minutes in, a Holy Cross player clipped the top cross bar of the Lyme-Old Lyme goal. The ball bounced on the goal line, but did not cross it. Senior goalkeeper Emily Rivera scrambled to save the ball as the Wildcat fans breathed a collective sigh of relief. Shots by our forwards went comfortably into the gloves of the Holy Cross keeper or missed the goal as the Crusaders made the better chances of the half. With four minutes left in the half, a Holy Cross player broke through on goal for a golden opportunity to score only to be rushed and stopped by Rivera. The half ended scoreless for both teams.

Senior forward Madeline Ouellette passes the ball. (Photo: Erik Zawodniak)

A handball by senior defender Maddie Zrenda nine minutes into the second half was enough to settle the stalemate. Holy Cross received a penalty kick that was comfortably put into the bottom left hand corner of the net. With the score at 0 – 1, the Lady Wildcats had to find a way back. With twenty-five minutes left, Zrenda took a free kick that went into Holy Cross’s box where Ouellette put an equalizer away. The game ended into overtime at 1 – 1, both teams desperate to get a winning goal.

Zrenda take a free kick. (Photo: Anna Donato)

With 4:47 left for the first period of overtime, junior forward Mya Johnson scored the winning goal for Lyme-Old Lyme with a superb header off a corner. The score at 2 – 1 and the Crusaders worked tired, the Lady Wildcats had Holy Cross beat. Johnson was named MVP of the game. This is the second consecutive stand alone state championship for girls soccer, the Lady Wildcats beating Old Saybrook in 2016 and being co-champions with Notre-Dame Fairfield in 2015.

Johnson dribbles past an Holy Cross defender. (Photo: Anna Donato)

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Girls Soccer Wins State Championship for Third Year in a Row