MILLBURN, NJ — The Nutley Raiders saw their season come to a close against the Millburn Millers Wednesday afternoon, as Millburn got off to a quick start en route to an eventual 7-1 win.
Nutley's lone goal came from Mikayla Scoch, while Raiders goalkeeper Catalena Robinson had eight saves in the loss.
Carly Bernstein netted the first goal of the contest for Millburn with 35:44 left in the first half, and then added what turned out to be the eventual game-winner just 1:27 later, with 34:17 left in the first half of an eventual Millburn 7-1 win. The Millers also got two goals from Ella Chzarnowski, and a goal apiece from Zoe Palomaki, Julia Saggio and Julia Benitez to round out the scoring.
After the final whistle, Nutley Head Coach Mike DiPiano was unhappy with what he deemed sloppy officiating in a key game.
“It’s not the result we would have wanted,” Di Piano said. “Officiating was poor, and that can be printed, I don’t really care. There were five offsides goals. We had a guy on the sideline that couldn’t keep up with the play of the game. That changed the whole dynamic of the game.
The first three goals were offsides here,” DiPiano said, gesturing to his team’s first half defensive side of the field. “Two in the second half were offside. He missed a handball. Their goalie grabbed the ball two times outside of the box. On a state quarterfinal, there needs to be better officiating.
DiPiano also noted that Nutley had come in shorthanded, as his sweeper had been out and unable to play the last two weeks, and one of his team’s defenders is out as a cautionary result due to COVID protocols.
“So to be down two defenders in a state quarterfinal, it doesn’t help,” DiPiano said. “We were ready for the game, we were prepared for the game, we still felt despite missing defensive starters that we were still going to be in that game, it just didn’t fall that way.”
As the team heads into the offseason, DiPiano noted his Raiders are losing just four seniors to graduation and will bring back a significant junior class. He hopes and expects that the class of 2022 will do great things, as a number of outside observers have predicted.
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