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Norwalk Soccer Reaches State Semifinals

NORWALK, Conn. – A little more than five minutes away from penalty kicks, Norwalk and Kevin Joslyn finally solved the impenetrable defense of Farmington. The junior forward didn’t miss the opportunity to knock out the defending Class LL boys soccer champions.

Joslyn scored with 5:40 left in the second overtime to give the third-seeded Bears a well-earned 1-0 win over the No. 6 Indians at Testa Field. Norwalk will play Trumbull in Saturday’s semifinals at a time and site to be announced.

Erick Romero set up the game-winner when he lofted a high pass toward Joslyn. Farmington goalie Austin Peluso came out to field the bounce, but Joslyn got his right foot on it before Peluso grabbed it. His shot rolled into the open goal.

“We were trying that play the whole game, and they defended it pretty well,’’ Joslyn said. ”I thought it was never going to come down. It finally did, and I was able to get it in the goal. We knew it was only going to take one goal to win.”

Norwalk (16-2-2) carried the play most of the game. The Bears had several scoring opportunities, including chances by Nick Zuniga and Mike Broncati inside the final 10 minutes of regulation. Farmington had few opportunities and nearly scored in the first overtime before Santiago Muriel cleared a ball that was close to crossing the goal. Farmington, a strong defensive team, was content to play for overtime and penalty kicks most of the game. Joslyn’s goal finally found a crack in the Farmington defense.

“It would’ve been a shame if we had lost this one,’’ Norwalk coach Chris Laughton said. “We talk about getting better every game, and I think we are.”

Norwalk goalie Svet Kozak made four saves while Peluso made seven saves. The Bears made the finals in 2004 but have not won a state crown since 1966. They get a rematch with Trumbull, which handled the Bears during the regular season, 2-0.

“This is amazing,’’ Joslyn said. “We’ve been unlucky in the past. We lost in the first round of the FCIACs, and we realize states is our only option. Now we want to go all the way through to the end.”

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