LYNN — The Saugus girls soccer team put together a solid game in all phases Wednesday, cruising to a 4-0 win over English in the rain at Manning Field.
The Sachems spread the wealth on offense. Shaylin Groark, Brianna Giardullo, Jordan Morris and Jillian Ricupero each scored one goal.
“We did a good job transitioning offensively,” Saugus coach Chris Coviello said. “We played a little faster than they did at times. That helped. But overall, weather conditions and everything, I thought we moved the ball well.
On the defensive end Saugus, also played an excellent game. Lexi Reyes played a nice game and earned the shutout in goal.
“English is a good team,” Coviello said. “They play tough and hard, they don’t give up. But we smothered just about everything they did on defense.”
While the Sachems seemed to capitalize on just about all their chances, the Bulldogs couldn’t catch a break. English had plenty of opportunities but some uncharacteristic mistakes proved costly.
“Our best kicker (Melissa Zayas) missed a penalty kick which she ordinarily wouldn’t do,” English coach Ed McNeil said. “That would’ve made it 3-1. And just before that she had a cross that seven players let go by. Offensively we’re really challenged. We have one big offensive player (Zayas) and Chris (Coviello) knows who she is. She had to work harder to get chances.
“I thought our defense played tough (Wednesday),” McNeil said. “They were aggressive they go dirty and our goalie is terrific.”
English started with some offensive pressure but it didn’t take long for the Sachems to find their footing. Groark got off Saugus’ first shot of the game but Elysse Newson made the save for the Bulldogs and followed with another save on a penalty kick.
But eventually Saugus capitalized. Jeimmy Monroy Rodriguez ripped a shot that was deflected off the leg of Groark and slipped passed Newson to put the Sachems ahead 1-0.
Later in the first half, English failed to generate a solid chance on a corner kick and the Sachems transitioned right down the field to score again. Giardullo made a nice move passed a defender and caught Newson too far out of the net, scoring an easy goal to stretch the Saugus lead to 2-0.
In the second half the Sachems got back on the board in the first five minutes thanks to a goal from Morris to stretch their lead to a comfortable 3-0.
Later in the half a Saugus handball gave Zayas her penalty kick chance but she kicked it right at Reyes who made the save to keep the shutout.
Saugus went right down the field after the failed penalty kick. Ricupero took advantage this time, getting possession of a loose ball out front and finding the back of the net to cap off the scoring in the 4-0 win.
“It could’ve easily been 2-1, 3-2 but Saugus outplayed us,” McNeil said. “They’re a better team than us. But to me it’s just very disappointing we didn’t score a goal. We moved Jullianna Perry up front, tried to get more offense than we’ve had. We just don’t score enough.”
The win moves the Sachems to 7-6 on the year, just two away from clinching a state tournament berth. Saugus will hope to get one step closer to that goal next Tuesday at Salem (7). English has another tough test next Tuesday (4) at East Boston.
BOYS CROSS COUNTRY
St. Mary’s 27, Williams 30
St. Mary’s 19, Arlington Catholic 44
Taban Maynok took first place in the 3.1-mile course at 17:16. Other solid performances came from Kyle Kwiatek (third place, 17:56), Anthony D’Itria (eighth, 19:02), Sean Osbahr (ninth, 19:22), Brett O’Brien (10th, 19:28), John Nowicki (11th, 19:30) and Jesse Moriello (12th, 19:37).
GIRLS CROSS COUNTRY
Williams 28, St. Mary’s 29
Arlington Catholic 15, St. Mary’s 48
St. Mary’s top runners were Anna Fringuelli (ninth, 24:53), Luna Robichaud (11th, 25:45), Lily Newhall (13th, 26:20), Erin Lewis (14th, 26:34) and Julia Jo Gramilini (16th, 27:00).