NEW HARTFORD – New Hartford’s Jordan Restivo had one of those dream games Tuesday at Don Edick Field.
Restivo, a junior forward, scored four goals as the Spartans pulled away for a 6-2 victory Tuesday over rival Whitesboro in a Tri Valley League girls soccer battle. The win gave New Hartford a leg up in the TVL race and extended its winning streak to three games after a 3-1 season-opening defeat to Jamesville-DeWitt.
“She was unbelievable,” New Hartford head coach Frank DuRoss, Jr. said of Restivo. “She finds a way to put it in. She has a nose to score and is a tough, tough girl.”
It was a career high for Restivo, who has several times scored three goals during her varsity career.
“We focused on possessing the ball and we built up and we were all there ready to finish when we got the opportunity,” Restivo said. “We just kept working and trying to finish and luckily for me most of my shots went in.”
The Spartans opened the scoring at 35:24 as Julianne Sekula beat two Whitesboro defenders in the right corner and maneuvered to the middle and passed it to the front of the net and a cutting Restivo buried it into the top right corner.
Less than four minutes later New Hartford made it 2-0 as Sekula took a perfect through ball from Shae Siniscarco and flipped it past Whitesboro keeper Sierra Crouch. Crouch, who came out of the net attempting to beat Sekula to the ball, made 15 saves and kept the Warriors in it early while their offense found its rhythm.
Despite outshooting Whitesboro 16-3 through the opening 35 minutes of the first half, the Spartans found themselves mired in a 2-2 tie after the Warriors’ Ashley Hewko (24:39) and Jaryn Spellman (22:56) knotted the game with perfectly lofted shots over New Hartford keeper Abby Buchholz.
“I thought we were a little impatient in the beginning,” New Hartford head coach Frank DuRoss said. “I think we tried too many through balls and got away from playing our game, which is to possess the ball. I think we did that much better as the game went on.”
Whitesboro (1-1-1) nearly grabbed a 3-2 lead with 5:20 remaining in the first half as Alexa DeCarr got behind New Hartford’s defense, but her shot just missed wide of the left post.
The Spartans responded and regained the lead as Bianca Hickey passed to Christina Paul who fed a perfect ball to Restivo, who blasted a shot from the 18’ past an outstretched Sierra Crouch and just inside the left post.
With 1:17 remaining in the half, New Hartford doubled its advantage as Restivo scored her third goal of the game by taking advantage of a defensive misplay by the Warriors and drilling a shot just under the crossbar.
In the second half, Whitesboro seemed much more comfortable and had much better opportunities offensively. Both teams had six shots in the half and the Warriors were quicker to the ball, and passed the ball with more precision and purpose.
“The big thing is never letting the score dictate how you play,” Whitesboro coach Corinne Rothdiener said. “We gave it everything we had and New Hartford scored two great goals in the second half. The girls had the determination that we would compete and make it a good game. They need to play for the teammate next to them. Then at the end of the game, if you can look at yourself in the mirror … that’s all you can ask.”
The Warriors had three early opportunities to cut into New Hartford’s 4-2 lead, but couldn’t beat senior keeper Gabby Hobika, who, as usual, split time with Buchholz.
Following Whitesboro’s early push in the second half, Restivo notched her fourth goal by left-footing a shot over Crouch and just under the crossbar with 33:37 remaining. Emily VanWagoner closed out the scoring with a goal at 18:59 on a nice assist from Kayla Wrate.
The Warriors (1-1-1) try to bounce back Thursday when they host Rome Free Academy in the first regular season game on the new turf at Ed Wadas Athletic Complex. Tuesday’s defeat provided a measuring stick for how the Warriors match up with one of the top teams in Class A. Rothdiener has a young group that figures to show tremendous improvement as the season progresses.
“We’re expecting to get better every day,” Rothdiener said. “So we just need to take each day and each game and work at improving one day at a time.”
Christina Paul and Siniscarco had two assists apiece for the Spartans, who have rattled off three impressive wins after a 3-1 season-opening defeat to Jamesville-DeWitt. The Spartans have lofty goals this season, but DuRoss aims to keep them grounded and focused on the simple things that win championships. The next step is Thursday’s game at Central Valley Academy.
“We are just trying to get better every single day,” DuRoss said. “We just need to stay with our game plan, move the ball, possess the ball and play a team game.”
New Hartford 6, Whitesboro 2
Whitesboro (1-1-1): Ashley Hewko 1-0, Jaryn Spellman 1-0, Alyssa Sherline 0-1, Alexa DeCarr 0-1, Haylee Smith 0-1. Sierra Crouch 15 saves.
New Hartford (3-1): Jordan Restivo 4-0, Emily VanWagoner 1-0, Julianne Sekula 1-0, Christina Paul 0-2, Shae Siniscarco 0-2, Kayla Wrate 0-1. Abby Buchholz 4 saves, Gabby Hobika 5 saves.
Nick Sardina is a writer for midyorksportsreport.com. Follow Nick onTwitter @nsardinamysr or on Facebook. Contact him via email at