A bravura performance by goalkeeper Paloma Criollo wasn't enough Nov. 9 as the Shepaug Valley High girls' soccer side saw its 2010 campaign end in the state class `S' tournament first round.

The Spartans dropped a 1-0 decision to host Cromwell as the Panthers scored from a free kick in the second half.

"The teams played a physical game, with a lot of back and forth play," reported Shepaug coach Tara Flaherty, who praised her netminder's 14-save effort.

The loss closed the books on an 8-7-2 season for the Region 12 girls.

It also ended the Spartan kick careers of seniors Paloma Criollo, Ali Moravsky, Claudia Bierce, Jordan Butler, Alana Crumrine, Rosemary Galinski and Alexi Lopriore, who had combined talents to help Shepaug to the state tournament several years in succession.

"Paloma Criollo had a great season and was a leader for our team," said coach Flaherty, whose keeper spun eight shutouts in net. "Her prowess in the goal gave our defense strength."

"Alexandra Moravsky, our first-team Berkshire League all-star, was a leader on and off the pitch," she added. "She also had a great season and showed a lot of versatility this season."

The impending departure of the Class of 2011 shouldn't leave the cupboard bare for coach Flaherty and her crew, however.

"Even though we are losing some fantastic seniors, our team should still be strong next year," she commented. "Our underclassmen showed some incredible growth and poise during the last few weeks."

"The key to our successes this year was when we played controlled soccer and played together as a team," coach Flaherty concluded. "Our seniors will be missed, but we will be looking forward to a strong showing next season."