Wilton whips Bears
By JOHN NASH
HOUR STAFF WRITER
WILTON — You know it’s a good day when you surprise even yourself.
The Wilton boys soccer team did just that on Wednesday afternoon, not just by defeating the previously undefeated Norwalk Bears, but by the manner in which they did it.
This was not a one-goal thriller.
Far from it, in fact. This was a simple beating: Wilton 4, Norwalk 1.
“I’m at a loss for words,” said Wilton junior striker David Brown, who netted two of his team’s goals to pace the offense. “Of all the performances I’ve seen from our team during my years here, this is by the best one. It was amazing. From defense, to midfield, to me and Kyle (Dedrick) up on top, it was unbelievable.” It was certainly a shell-shocked Norwalk squad which limped away from Lilly Field, including one of which was given a red card for arguing an offsides call, and another of which suffered a knee injury.
In the early going, though, the Bears looked like, well, the Bears.
Less than four minutes into the game, Norwalk found itself up by a 1-0 score
when Kevin Joslyn easily beat an out-of-position Peter Como for a goal and the lead.
” I got ( ticked) off,” said Wilton head coach Jim Lewicki. “I don’t mind getting scored on if it’s earned. But if it’s a score and it’s because of our stupidity, that drives me up a wall. They key for us is that we stayed poised.”
And Como, who finished with five saves, played perfect the rest of the way behind a defensive unit that limited Norwalk inside the 18.
Wilton’s offense, meanwhile, proved to be unstoppable against a Norwalk defensive unit that had only given up two goals and had pitched five shutouts on the season.
In the 11th minute of the game, Dedrick set up Robert Aravena with a through ball down the right sideline.
Aravana pushed the ball further up the sideline before a deflection by a Norwalk defender went toward the goal rather than away from it. Aravana never stopped running, playing the ball with one more touch before burying it behind Norwalk goalkeeper Svet Novak (3 saves) to tie the game.
The Warriors grabbed the go-ahead goal late in the first half when Johnny Prinner got the ball to Dedrick in the penalty area. Dedrick didn’t get a lot of heat from the Bears backfield and had time to dodge one before firing the shot that put the Warriors up 2-1.
“They scored great goals,” said Norwalk head coach Chris Laughton. “You have to give them credit for that. I don’t want to take anything away from Wilton.”
In the second half, one of Laughton’s own proteges put the game away for the Warriors.
Brown — who Laughton coaches in travel ball — scored both of his goals to help Wilton keep the pressure on Norwalk. Dedrick set up the first while Luke Reyes-Guerra-Dunn sent the pass that led to the second.
The final outcome did make Lewicki a seer.
Before the game, he told his team that the defense which stepped up would be the team that would pull out the win.
“Whichever defense played the best was going to decide the game,” Lewicki said. “I know they can attack. I know we can attack. We made all the plays.”
Led by Matt Chann, Ryder Farmakis, Troy Lamason, Matt Schneidman, Dakota Orton and Matt Contino, the Warriors limited Norwalk to just eight shots in the game.
“We played great,” said Lamason, a junior center back. “It was a team effort. It came down to playing cohesively and marking their runs. I think we had a pretty bad (5-3) defeat against Ridgefield and we wanted to make a statement.”
While the Warriors were under-manned in the Ridgefield contest, the Norwalk game gave them the opportunity to show what they could do at 100 percent. “They were terrific. They did a great job,” said Lewicki. “That’s the best game I’ve seen Wilton High School play in a very, very long time — complete game. We had to pressure them. We couldn’t lay back. This is a game they wanted.”
For Norwalk, it’s run of seven straight wins to open the season came to a sudden halt.
“I thought Wilton played a great game,” said Laughton, whose team will have to face Ridgefield on Saturday without Joslyn (red card). “They definitely took us out of our game and our boys didn’t respond the right way. We just didn’t play well. Sometimes you need a wake-up call and this was our wake-up call. Sometimes you learn more from a loss than a win and I think these guys got a good lesson today. Wilton really took it to us and know we’ll find out how bad it hurts their pride.”
The Warriors, now 6-1-1, travel to Darien Friday.
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