Boys soccer: Wilton falls short in second-round loss, 2-1

For the Wilton High boys soccer team, it was a case of too little, too late, in Wednesday’s Class L second-round game against Maloney in Meriden.

The Spartans scored a goal in each half to lead 2-0 and the Warriors, despite a late push, couldn’t make up the difference in a 2-1 loss.

“We played much better in the second half. We had a little more possession. We just couldn’t get by them,” said a disappointed head coach Jim Lewicki. “We made a few mistakes and (Maloney) capitalized. That what it boils down to — you capitalize on mistakes and that’s what they did.”

Maloney, the 15th seed, improved to 12-6, while the 34th-seeded Warriors ended the season 7-8-4.

“(Maloney) played a good game, and we didn’t play our game, so it was unfortunate,” Lewicki said.

The Warriors didn’t generate much offense in the first half, with only two shots, while Maloney had six shots in the half. Noah Lopez scored the goal at 14:18, off an assist by Jonathan Sanchez, to make it 1-0 at the half.

The second half saw the play go back and forth, with both sides creating chances. Wilton had an excellent opportunity about 10 minutes into the half when John Brown made a great run down the right side and crossed the ball to the front of goal. Chase Connolly, charging down the middle, just missed getting a piece of the ball, which continued to the left of goal, where an open shot by Josh Bender sailed high.

Maloney then made it 2-0 with 28:49 left on another goal by Lopez, who headed a ball in off a corner kick by Denis Blandon.

Wilton added an extra striker and that helped create more pressure as the second half wore on. The Warriors finally got on the board with 16:30 left when a long ball by Alex Ziluca from midfield bounced into the box. Bender was able to get a foot on it and the ball rolled to the right side of the goal, where it was knocked in by Michael Zizzadoro.

The final 15 minutes saw the Warriors get off a number of shots but they couldn’t put anything on goal against a physical and organized Maloney defense.

Maloney finished with a 10-7 edge in shots, and both teams had three shots on goal. Tyler Smith had one save for Wilton.