By BRIAN CUNNIFF
STONE HARBOR — The Wildwood Catholic High School girls soccer team dialed long distance to post a convincing victory over rival Lower Cape May Friday.
The Crusaders scored all but one of their goals from a distance of 15 yards or more en route to a 5-0 win.
“One of the things we’ve tried to emphasize is, just take your shot,” Wildwood Catholic coach Kara Saunders said. “We know Kaia (Ray of Lower Cape May) is a really good goalie so we just wanted to take shots because you never know. You need to test a really good goalie so we took a lot of shots. If you have an opening, why wait? Take your chance.”
Kimmy Casiello and Carly Murphy each scored on shots from outside the penalty area to give Wildwood Catholic (6-4) a 2-0 lead at intermission.
Nola Quinn then scored two straight in the second half, the first on a shot from the top of the penalty area off a failed corner-kick clearance and the second to finish a breakaway. Reagan Flickinger rounded out the scoring with a shot from the top of the penalty area that rang off the left post before ricocheting into the right side panel.
“This was the last time our seniors were going to have a home game against Lower so we had to make this game count,” Saunders said. “The girls really did that. They were determined.”
Grace Murphy earned the shutout in goal for the Crusaders.
Lower Cape May fell to 3-6 with the loss.
Wildwood Catholic next faces Middle Township on Tuesday. Unbeaten Middle handed the Crusaders a 9-0 loss in the teams’ first meeting last month.
“It’s such a big game for us,” Saunders said. “The last time? Well, it is what it is. But we’ve seen so much growth since that game so we’re determined to make sure it’s not like last time. It won’t be easy at all. Obviously Middle is on a huge run. But our girls have a different mindset. It’s going to be tough but this game against Lower was a great way for us to lead into that.”