Warde’s girls soccer team just refuses to be scored upon.
The Mustangs extended their scoreless streak in 2012 to 640 minutes thanks to a little luck and junior goalkeeper Katie Brennan.
Warde and Ludlowe tied 0-0 Tuesday night. The draw extended the Mustangs’ unbeaten streak to four against their crosstown-rivals. Ludlowe has not scored a goal against Warde since 2009, a span of more than 276 minutes.
But it was Ludlowe who had the better chance throughout the humid, damp night. Falcons forward Emily Matis had a goal disallowed in the 26th minute when she was deemed offsides.
Matis was also robbed multiple times by Warde keeper Katie Brennan, including Brennan’s point-blank save on the Ludlowe senior in the 51st minute.
Warde maintained possession for much of the second half, but appeared to try a bit too hard for a perfect set-up. Emily Pullen led the Mustangs with three shots, but could not beat Bridget Clarke. Ludlowe’s keeper made seven saves.
The teams played with a pink ball and Warde wore pink jerseys for the
“Kick It for a Cure” breast cancer game.
October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month and Warde coach Tom Cunningham and Ludlowe’s leader Kate Dawson both participated by wearing pink shirts.
Dawson admitted she was disappointed that her club couldn’t beat the previously unbeaten Mustangs.
“I’m disappointed that we didn’t get the win,” she said. “We came in with the intensity level … it’s definitely frustrating.”
Ludlowe’s first-year coach challenged her team to blemish Warde’s goals-against, and believes her club must continue to work on finishing goals.
“I said to the girls ‘I challenge you to score a goal,’” Dawson said. “We came up empty, but we had our opportunities.”
Both sides had strong student turn-outs despite less-than-stellar
It rained on-and-off and was foggy at Tetreau/Davis Field. The rain picked up more in the second half — the conditions were better than at the infamous snow-game these teams played three years ago — but it was a lousy night weather-wise.
Warde’s fan base sang songs and displayed an American flag. The Ludlowe students were quieter, but did verbalize chants of their own.
The conditions didn’t help but both coaches admitted that nerves came into play.
Neither side’s played in front of that crowd this year. Plus the drama of battling your crosstown-rival in a town like Fairfield enhances the stakes.
“Anytime you’re playing here and you’re playing your crosstown-rival … I think that the girls took a little time to settle and find their poise,” Dawson said. “We had a hard time finding our rhythm tonight in difficult conditions and it’s intense.”
Cunningham has become accustomed to this.
“This game is always that way,” Cunningham said. “It doesn’t matter who has the better team … throw everything out the window.”
Warde is going to concede a goal at some point this year.
Warde’s played nine straight spotless regular season games dating back to Oct. 24, 2011 against Darien.
But the Mustangs have an exceedingly difficult week coming ahead. They host Ridgefield Saturday, St. Joseph Tuesday and trek to Trumbull on Thursday.
I’d imagine one of those three will pot one, and could even deal Warde its first loss.
Cunningham admitted that while the Falcons have a lesser record than his club, they’ve also played a more difficult schedule to-date.
“They’ve played some tough teams and that’s why their record is the way it is,” he said. “We’ve had a couple easier games, so you can’t take the record totally into effect.”
The Falcons have lost two games– both one-goal losses to St. Joes and Greenwich, respectively– and now have tied Ridgefield and Warde.
That’s pretty good.
Pat Pickens is the sports editor of the Fairfield Citizen, a Hearst Connecticut Newspaper organization. Follow him on Twitter here.