Shore Conference Tournament Soccer

Southern Loses Shootout in Boys Soccer Quarterfinal

By David Biggy | Oct 16, 2019
Photo by: David Biggy Mario Addiego scored the only goal in Southern’s 1-0 win over Middletown South during the Shore Conference Tournament first round.

Stafford Township — The Southern Regional boys soccer team fell a goal or two short of capturing the Shore Conference Class A South division title, but the Rams on Oct. 12 made sure it didn’t fall short of advancing to the Shore Conference Tournament quarterfinals, scoring a 1-0 shutout against Middletown South in their first-round clash.

Mario Addiego delivered the only goal during the second half, while goalkeeper Kayce Bennet managed six saves for the shutout, to lead the seventh-seeded Rams (11-2-1) past the 10th-seeded Eagles. Brandon Notte assisted on Addiego’s goal.

Interestingly, the first round of the SCT included a bunch of upsets, including one that benefited the Rams. On the other side of Southern’s immediate bracket, 15th-seeded Manasquan delivered a 1-0 upset of second-seeded Marlboro to set up the quarterfinals matchup.

On Tuesday, Oct. 15, the Rams and Warriors were tied, 1-1, after regulation, but Manasquan ended up winning during the sudden-death stage of penalty kicks to prevent Southern from advancing. With the Rams trailing 1-0 heading into the last two minutes of regulation, Kevin Kiernan took a feed from Notte, worked the ball across the penalty area and then slipped a shot to the inside of the far post to tie the game with just over a minute to go.

During the opening stage of the shootout, Ben Hanneman, Kiernan, Nico Leonard and Nick Budd equaled the Warriors’ output, sending the shootout into sudden death, which Manasquan ultimately won when its keeper, Joe Weinstein, made a stop on Southern’s third attempt.

Pinelands, Barnegat Boys
Go Out In SCT Prelims

While Southern kept its winning ways going in the Shore Conference Tournament, both Pinelands and Barnegat hit the proverbial wall in the preliminary round – the Wildcats (7-4-1) knocked out during a 3-0 loss to 16th-seeded Toms River South, which then went on to stun top-seeded Holmdel in the first round, and Barnegat dropping a 5-0 contest to Brick Memorial.

Southern Girls
Fall in Overtime

After pulling off a win on penalty kicks to knock off 13th-seeded Middletown South in the preliminary round of the Shore Conference Tournament earlier in the week, the 20th-seeded Southern girls soccer team was bounced by a familiar foe in the first round on Oct. 11, dropping a 2-1, overtime contest against Toms River North.

The Mariners, who had defeated the Rams, 5-2, two weeks prior, scored the game winner during the second overtime period following a 1-1 tie at the end of regulation and a first overtime stint. Brookelle Kline scored the only goal for Southern, assisted by Megan Lockwood, who last week became the program’s career assists leader. Goalkeeper Lindsey Selert kept the Rams close with nine saves.

But it was the game before, in the preliminary round, that became the highlight of Southern’s week, as the Rams tied Middletown South, 1-1, then outscored them in a lengthy battle of PKs to advance. Gianna Simon scored the Rams’ only goal of regulation, assisted by Lockwood. Selert was stellar in goal, recording 19 saves.

Through the first stretch of five penalty kicks, each team had scored twice, forcing sudden-death PKs, which still remained tied through four more rounds before the Rams finally swiped the victory.

Unfortunately, also on Oct. 8, the Pinelands and Barnegat girls soccer teams lost their preliminary-round contests – the 12th-seeded Wildcats falling, 2-0, to 21st-seeded Matawan, and the 24th-seeded Bengals knocked out by ninth-seeded St. Rose, 5-0.

— David Biggy

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