In the closing weekend of the West Haven Youth Soccer League, a few of the travel teams took part in the annual Guilford Soccer Tournament. The Gunning Law Firm West Haven girls played North Branford to a 0-0 tie in a hard-fought, well played defensive battle on both sides of the ball. It was a total team effort for the Westies, Shelby Gagne, Julia Tsakonas and Sophie Gigliotti played well at forward.
The midfield was controlled by Selena Izzo and Maddie Lentine, who sent several balls through the North Branford defense. West Haven’s goalkeeper duties were handled by Savannah Lopez, who made several key saves to preserve the shutout. Defense was handled by Grace Nowak, Riley Collins, Tomalyn Williams and Melissa Tsakonas.
In the later afternoon game on Saturday, the Westies faced a good Guilford team, losing, 4-0. Maddy Molster, Micaela Owen, Hannah Davey, and Jalen Chandler played well. On Sunday morning, the Westies looked to bounce back against East Hudson, and tied, 1-1, on a great last-second goal from Julia Tsakonas. Good play from the defense from Amanda Tsakonas.
In the last game of the tournament, West Haven played a tough Killingly team, losing, 3-1. Shelby Gagne scored the lone goal for West Haven.
The Milano & Wanat West Haven U-11 boys also played in the tournament, advancing to the championship game on Sunday afternoon, but lost to Guilford, 5-1, in the season finale. West Haven went 1-1-1 in pool play to capture the No. 2 seed. The Westies opened play with a 7-3 loss to Guilford on Saturday afternoon before bouncing back to earn a 2-2 tie against Naugatuck later in the day. West Haven then defeated RHAM, 6-1, on Sunday morning to advance to the championship match.
In the first game on Saturday Guilford jumped out to a 2-0 lead before West Haven rallied. Sean Studley scored twice to get the Westies even before halftime. Pedro Furtado scored in the second half but Guilford pulled away late in the game. Rafi Treat was solid in goal and earned Man of the Match honors as determined by the opponent.
In game two versus Naugatuck on Saturday, West Haven scored first when Pacey Larka found the back of the net. Naugatuck scored twice and had a 2-1 lead at halftime. Studley’s clutch goal late in the second half helped the Westies earn the tie and a chance to play for the title on Sunday. Miacon Miguel was solid in goal for the Westies. Furtado earned Man of the Match honors.
The Blue Devils knew they had to beat RHAM for a chance at a rematch versus Guilford. And the boys played their best game of the season. Furtado drilled a long free kick to open the scoring. After RHAM tied it, Studley redirected one in to regain the lead. Furtado then scored directly off a corner kick by curling it in and over the keeper. Studley ripped in another goal and the Westies led 4-1 at halftime.
In the second half West Haven dominated play. Furtado notched a hat trick with a goal before Jonathan Forbes-Wolfe capped the scoring when he converted a Furtado corner kick. Treat notched the win in goal and Efrain Brown earned Man of the Match. The back line of Brown, Jovan Lakaj and Matthew Panton controlled the game and did not allow RHAM any chances in the second half.
In the championship game Guilford and West Haven played an even first half, but Guilford pulled away in the second half. West Haven’s lone tally was an own goal. Treat was amazing in goal, making several saves, including stopping two breakaways. Panton earned Man of the Match honors.
Studley led the team in goals with five in the tournament and also added a pair of assists. Furtado had four goals and three assists. Miguel had two assists. Panton and Brown each had an assist. Larka and Forbes-Wolfe scored a goal apiece. Throughout the tournament Panton, Lakaj and Brown anchored the defense. Treat and Miguel patrolled the goal. Nate Charron and Lucas Iversen were excellent, both offensively and defensively, on the wings. Isaac Irizarry played valuable minutes at striker.
The Keenan Funeral Home Yellow Jackets played their last game of the season Saturday with a win against the Shoreline Wellness Green Leafs, 8-1. Two goals were scored each by Ava Pellino and Lexi Lucas. Additional goals were scored by Madison Garguilo, Kayci Gayle, Camilla Murphy and Kaylee Pellino. Nylah Beah scored the lone goal for the Leafs. The girls played tough despite missing several players.
The Elite Soccer Camps Sharks finished their season with a 5-5 tie against the Jason Ranelli Gray Ghosts. Luca Decresenzo and Matteo D’Elia led the scoring for the Sharks, with Jax Guarino making some key passes. Andrew Hulse showed a lot of hustle, while Seth Empiric and Ben Trenchard tried to do moves as they dribbled down the field. Emmett Hemming made a few key defensive stops to help keep the Sharks in the game.
The Gunning Law Firm Grey Wolves lost to Cappetta’s Italian Imports, 3-1. Kylie Gibbon scored off of a nice corner kick by Arianna Throm. Sophia Empric displayed excellent foot work and dribbling skills while Hailey Dargon and Daniela Bazar played tough defense. Lulu Sebas and Lynnie Chesson showed speed and determination throughout the game.
Nick’s Luncheonette Dragons played the University of New Haven Knights Saturday, with the Dragons taking the win, 10-5. All the kids played awesome, but Holden Napoletano, Dylan Narvaez Ramos, and Jaden Prates playing great to earn the win.
The West Haven Youth Soccer League would like to thank its sponsors, fans, coaches and players for another successful season. Registration for the fall season is open at whys.org.