Unbeaten STA survives upset bid by Trinity, 1-0

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MANCHESTER, NH — Sometimes your best isn’t quite good enough.

Trinity High pushed unbeaten St. Thomas Aquinas to the brink, falling 1-0, in a game played in a steady rain, Friday afternoon at Derryfield Park.

A goal in the 33rd minute by All-State forward Maddie Karsonovich stood up for STA, which sits alone atop the Division III standings at 10-0-0.

The loss snapped a four-game winning streak for Trinity (6-3-0). But Coach Mike Martinez says the game was indicative of his club’s steadily improving play.

“This is easily the best game my girls have played all season,” said Martinez. “They’ve put everything together. They showed up and worked for 80 minutes. I have absolutely no complaints.”

The game was tightly checked, with neither team able to generate a consistent offensive attack with quality scoring chances. Trinity made a conscious effort to clog the middle third and force STA to the wings. Junior Mallory Habausz and the Pioneer mids did an excellent job dictating the flow of play and transitioning to the attack.

Meanwhile, senior Kayleigh Morris, sophomore Stella Platt and the Trinity backs kept Karsonovich marked up for most of the game. The talented striker, who has scored as many as five goals in a game this season, was relegated to the role of playmaker for the entire second half, unable to get a clean look.

What shots STA managed to put on Trinity keepers Mary Hubbard and Abby Grillo-Moore were from from terrible angles and most sailed harmlessly wide.

“We did a much better job with our positioning today,” said Martinez. “We really didn’t have any mental breakdowns. St. Thomas is a more skilled team than we are, so we had to outwork them.”

At the other end of the pitch, the Trinity offense was having an equally difficult time generating quality scoring bids against Saints’ keeper Genna Bolduc. The junior finished with six saves but none were especially testing. On several occasions, as Pioneer forwards tried to track down through balls in the attack zone, Bolduc arrived a half-step ahead, scooping the ball up and sending it the other way.

Trinity’s best stretch of offense came in the final two minutes. Morris and Sydney Demers helped generate pressure, maintaining ball possession and keeping the Saints back on their heels. The ball wound up in the vicinity of junior Kenzie Goldstien, who fought for possession, got a clean look and ripped a blast from around 24 yards that sailed over the crossbar by less than a foot.

Trinity looks to get back in the win column on Wednesday at 4 p.m., hosting Derryfield (4-6-0) in a huge rivalry game. The Pioneers will get another crack at STA, this time on the road, on Oct. 18.

St. Thomas Aquinas has a rivalry game of its own coming up. The Saints take on powerhouse Hopkinton (10-1-0) in a game that could decision the top seed in the Division III Tournament.





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Bill Gilman

Bill Gilman is a veteran journalist with 33 years of experience covering community news and sports in New England. He and his wife have two grown sons and two perfect granddaughters.