Only 27 years in the making, but no less exciting, was the Ridgewood Girls’ Varsity Soccer Team victory at the Bergen County Championship match on October 30th. Ridgewood scored the victory for the first time since 1994 over 1st ranked Ramapo High School (with whom ironically they shared the victory in 1994). The game was the third match-up between these rivals this season, with each team having one victory.
The game showed the tight competition between the teams, as the game was scoreless until the Ridgewood goal with only about 15 minutes left in the match. The winning shot was made by Ridgewood Sophomore, Isabella Winn, who has earned 38 points so far this year (with 15 goals and 8 assists). When asked about what made this game especially challenging, Isabella said “As a team, I would say in the first half we started off a little shaky, so we had to take a step back and refocus in order to get back into our style of play and maintain it consistently for the duration of the game.” This was exactly what Ridgewood did. The team came out strong in the second half, defending the ball and maintaining an aggressive style.
A key factor in this victory and their overall dominance this season was the strength of the defense. Paisley Tornatore, Ridgewood’s star goalkeeper, added another shutout to her record, which includes 71 saves. After the County Final, Paisley and the rest of her teammates on defense had 11 clean sheets. In total this season, the defense has allowed only 12 goals in all 20 games. When reflecting on the unit, Paisley said “Our backline is so comfortable with each other that they rarely ever panic and even those short passes, although they may seem pointless, create different opportunities. I’m honestly just fortunate that our defense allows me to be a part of that connection and glad that they have that faith to play the ball back to me. I think that trust comes from playing together for such a long period of time.” The clean sheets are “truly a great achievement for the entire team. I think it goes to show it’s not just one or two people that are carrying us, but instead a team effort. We not only attack as a team but defend as one.”
With the County Championship in hand, Ridgewood moved on to win the Quarter Finals of the State Sectional Championship, with a score of 3-0 against Morristown High School on November 5th. Ridgewood fans are excited to support the Varsity team as they move on to State Sectional Semifinals on November 9th against Montclair High School. Go Wood!
Elisha de Silva
Graphic: Darren Cooper