Girls soccer: Win over Trumbull keeps Warriors in playoff hunt

Entering Monday night’s game in Trumbull fighting for its postseason life, the Wilton High girls soccer team picked a good time to play its best game of the season.

Lindsay Groves scored the game’s only goal early in the second half and the Warriors held on for a 1-0 win to improve to 6-5 on the season.

It was the second straight win for Wilton, which was coming off a 5-0 win at Bridgeport Central last Friday.

“We knew that all our games now are must wins. I think the girls knew that. They worked very hard,” said Wilton head coach Renato Topalli of Monday's win. “I think it was our most complete game, from the defensive side to the attacking side.”

Trumbull (6-2-3) had entered the game tied for fifth in the FCIAC playoff standings. It was Wilton’s first win over a top-tier FCIAC rival, after earlier losses to Staples, St. Joseph, Fairfield Warde, Darien and Ridgefield.

The win left the Warriors tied with New Canaan in ninth place, one point behind Fairfield Ludlowe for the final FCIAC playoff spot. The team’s schedule down the stretch includes Greenwich (4-7-1), Danbury (3-7-2), McMahon (7-2-2), Stamford (0-11) and Ludlowe (5-2-4).

“The season is going to be over in about two weeks. We don’t want the season to end in two weeks,” said Topalli.

He said the Warriors came into Monday’s game still stinging from last Wednesday’s 2-0 loss at Ridgefield — a game they felt should have had a better outcome.

Wilton came out strong on Monday and had the better of the play in the first half, he said, but couldn’t find the back of the net despite multiple scoring chances.

Groves finally broke the deadlock about 10 minutes into the second half, with a shot from the right side.

“It was a beautiful shot,” said Topalli.

The Eagles has some good chances as well in the game, with goal Taylor Floyd made some key stops in the slippery conditions.

After Groves scored, the Warriors did a good job protecting the 1-0 lead.

“What we did well was really pressure them up high and not let them create any chances. Our forwards did a really nice job,” said Topalli. “When they did get the ball into our defensive third, we were organized and won the first and second balls and the one-on-one battles we needed to win.”

He praised the play of center back Chloe Zimmermann for leading the defensive effort.

“She was outstanding in the back and cleaned up anything that came in her direction, and kept us poised defensively,” he said. “The whole team just stepped to play an incredible game.”

In the team’s 5-0 at Central last Friday, the Warriors were led by Groves and Sophie Sudano with two goals each, and Paisley Eagan with one goal.