September 12, 2018

Sophomore Romano Showing Increased Confidence As PDS Girls’ Soccer Gets Off to Solid 1-0-1 Start

RARE JEWEL: Princeton Day School girls’ soccer player Jules Romano, right, controls the ball last Saturday against Princeton High. Romano and PDS rallied to pull out a 2-2 tie against PHS. The Panthers, who moved to 1-0-1 with the draw, were slated to host Morristown High on September 11 before playing at Hun on September 13 and at Moorestown Friends on September 14. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Jules Romano feels calmer on the field this fall for the Princeton Day School girls’ soccer season, with one season under her belt.

“Once I am on the ball, I am not as rushed as I was as a freshman,” said sophomore midfielder Romano. “I am more confident, I know my players.”

Romano displayed that composure as PDS hosted the George School (Pa.) in its season opener last Friday, tallying a goal 1:47 into the contest.

“I was just in the right place in the right time; it was off of a really nice throw in from Cailyn Jones,” recalled Romano. “I got a good flick in and it was just see the corner and shoot it.”

PDS kept shooting, scoring four goals in the second half on the way to a convincing 5-0 victory.

“I felt like our energy just picked up; we started to connect passes through the middle,” said Romano, in assessing the team’s late surge. “We calmed down, we played composed. We had really good possession in the second half.”

While Romano’s main focus is energizing the PDS defense, she is looking to attack when there is an opening.

“I am playing a little bit more of a defensive role but I try to get up a little more,” said Romano, who had an assist on Saturday as PDS battled to a 2-2 draw with Princeton High through two overtimes. “I am more of a defensive center mid, but
I get up when I can. It is what I want to do.”

With the Panthers working a quartet of freshmen into their rotation, Romano wants to help get them up to speed.

“Once we take them under our belt and get them going, they will definitely be impact players,” said Romano.

PDS head coach Pat Trombetta liked the way his team got things going against George.

“It was a nice start; we scored in the first two minutes of each half,” said Trombetta.

“We said in the second half if we can get on the board in the first 10 minutes, this thing should roll from there.”

In the second half, the Panthers got rolling as they turned the contest into a rout.

“The possession was good all over the field,” said Trombetta, who got goals from sophomore Kelly Beal, freshman Ava Mattson, senior Ariana Jones, and senior Kelsey Lane.

“I thought our energy was good and we were winning the 50/50 balls. I think those were the deciding factors controlling the tempo throughout.”

Trombetta likes how Romano has been controlling things in the midfield.

“If I look at our midfield, she is probably the most consistent and versatile player that we have on a team,” said Trombetta.

“She can play different positions. Last year we used her all over the field. This year she has found a home in the middle for us and she has done some good things for us inside.”

Sophomore Beal has been doing nice things up front. “Kelly’s energy was good; she was all over the field,” said Trombetta. “We can use her on the outside, we can use her up top so we have different options on how to use her on the field.”

All in all, it was a very good opening day for the Panthers. “If you look in the past, we have struggled getting out of the gate,” said Trombetta, whose team was slated to host Morristown High on September 11 before playing at Hun on September 13 and at Moorestown Friends on September 14. “We were happy all the way around today, it was great.”

In Romano’s view, PDS should draw confidence from the great effort. “Getting your first win on the home turf with all of the support just boosts up your morale,” said Romano.