Dolphins, Seahorses Optimistic For Soccer Playoff Spot
Missing the PSAL men’s soccer playoffs for the peninsula teams has become a bad habit in the last few years. Beach Channel and Far Rockaway will once again seek the answers that can extend their team’s chances into playing in the postseason.
The first true test of the year occurred last Tuesday in the second game of the season when Beach Channel defeated Far Rockaway 5-1. Michael Adedoyin came off the bench to score in the 35th and 64th minute to lead the Dolphins to their second win of the season.
Far Rockaway fell to 1-1 on the season as Kenneth Ibe scored the lone goal to make it 4-1 in the second half. The Seahorses could not hold off the Dolphins offense, according to head coach William Neylon. “Our passing wasn’t good and inaccurate. Beach Channel was bigger and more aggressive and a quicker team,” Neylon said. “They anticipated what we were going to do. They were the better team today.”
Beach Channel Assistant Coach Dominic Stanco, who played at one of the best Long Island soccer teams at Oceanside High School, says the team has brought over their improvement in practice on to the field.
“When I came into here. I saw a lot of talent but the key was to get together as a team for two weeks,” Stanco said. “It’s happened and it’s paid off. It’s a job well done”.
The Dolphins finished with a losing season after starting the season off in 2003 with two straight victories. The plain this year implemented by Kazalski and Stanco was to be more aggressive and push the ball up the field to take advantage of their good team speed.
The positive results were evident in their first win of the year at Springfield Gardens. Freshman Marlon Velasquez, who according to Stanco was phenomenal, scored fout goals in a 6-2 win. He may not keep that same scoring pace but if the Dolphins can receive contributions from players such as Dwayne Messam, Sergio Soto and Eric Renglio, Velasquez won’t have to score a ton of goals to win.
“We attack and attack,” said Stanco. “We play small ball because I grew up playing small ball. This team is very young and we only have three seniors. This team is going to be reckoned with in the next two years”.
Coach Neylon looks to make the playoffs after narrowly missing in 2002 and 2003. He has tried to correct the mistakes that have plagued his teams. “My weakness last year was defense but I’m looking to reinforce the defense and if the defense is right, we can control the game,” Neylon says.
In an 11-0 win over Queens Vocational, Neylon got three goals from Ikenneth Ibe, who scored a hat trick and Felipe Zaldana scoring twice will be the veterans that Neylon counts on to compete.
“If the midfield does their job and we can control the pace of the game, we have a stand a good chance of making the playoffs this year,” Neylon said.