By capturing both the Mercer County Tournament title and the NJISAA Prep A title, Pennington's Varsity Girls' Soccer team pulled off the "double" and accomplished the team's number one goal, which was set back in preseason camp in August.
The Red Raiders 5-1 victory over the Bucs of Blair Academy makes for fourteen Prep A titles in the last sixteen seasons for the program. The Red Raiders have also won the MCT a record ten times. Blair Academy had also had a fine season and arrived at Pennington on Thursday, November 1, determined to make the championship game a different story from when the Bucs lost by a score of 7-1 in the regular season game held on September 26.
The Bucs scored first and took a 1-0 lead into halftime despite being outshot by Pennington. The Red Raiders came out flying at the start of the second half, and it took them exactly 2:37 to score their first of five goals. Those five goals were scored over a thirteen-minute span and set the tone for a fitting end to a fine season and for the team's five seniors: Jaydin Avery, Sydney Gibbard, Mary Griswold, Maddie Lamb, and Gianna Lucchesi.
Avery took a pass from Sydney Gibbard and placed a shot to the far post to tie the score. Griswold scored following a gorgeous passing sequence between Ellie Hawkey and Avery. Avery's smooth lay-off pass to Griswold allowed her to curl a right-footed shot into the far post to give Pennington a 2-1 lead.
The Red Raiders scored a third soon after Griswold's goal as Kylie Daigle '21 sent Avery in one-on-one with Blair's keeper. Avery maneuvered around the keeper and slotted home a shot to put Pennington up 3-1.
Daigle again sent Avery in behind Blair's defense, and Avery sent a left-footed shot into the net for a 4-1 lead. Pennington's final goal was scored by Nicole Johan-Wisnierski '20, who received a nice lay-off pass from Avery.
Goalkeepers Sophia Kavulich '21 and Mary Kate Kramli '22 held Blair off the scoreboard following the Bucs' early goal and helped to secure a 5-1 championship game victory for the Red Raiders, who finish their season with a record of 16-2-1.