The Our Lady of Mercy Academy girls soccer team had its season come to an end Tuesday after a 2-0 loss to Rutgers Prep in the South Jersey Non-Public B semifinals.
The Villagers, who finished 16-6, had lost in the final to Holy Spirit last season and in the semifinals to Moorestown Friends in 2015.
“We went into the game knowing it would be a tough one to play,” OLMA assistant coach Elena Grady said. “I think, overall, we played well. Basically, we left everything on the line and played with our hearts.”
Micah Livingston and Isabella Pellecchia both scored for Rutgers Prep, and Emma Littman made three saves.
Rutgers Prep (19-2) outshot OLMA 16-4.
OLMA’s goalkeeper Jess Riordan made 13 saves.
“We tried to at least get back to where we were last year and try to redeem ourselves,” Grady said. “We were upset with the result, but we went home with our heads held high and we gave it our all.”
The Villagers won 12 consecutive games before entering Tuesday’s match. OLMA’s last loss was Sept. 27 to Holy Spirit.
“I think (our season) went really great,” Grady said. “After that loss, we went into every game and wanted to continue to build on our mistakes and adjusted our weaknesses. Our season has been a great experience with a great result at the end.”
The Villagers were led this season by senior Abby Ward, who had 40 goals and 10 assists on the season, bringing her career total to 84 goals and 46 assists.
“Obviously, she was one of the best parts of our offense,” Grady said. “We could always count on her to score and bring confidence and help the team out and to help get the team focused. She’s a great asset to our team.”
OLMA placed second in the Cape-Atlantic League United Division behind Holy Spirit.
“We have a good group of seniors next year and are returning with a lot of players,” Grady said. “We will build off this year and try to work off of making it to the semifinals. ... Next year should be a very good year.”
Our Lady of Mercy 0 0-0
Rutgers-Prep 1 1-2
Goals– Livingston, Pellecchia.
Goalies– Littman (3) RP; Riordan (13) OLMA.
Records– RP 19-2; OLMA 16-6.