March Kicks Off Peninsula Cup Soccer Season
The third incarnation of Peninsula Cup Soccer began last week with this year's teams named for college teams. Participation is up 12 percent from last spring and almost 21 percent since the inaugural season in 2007.
The highlight of the opening week was a 3-3 tie in the boys' sixth to eighth grade (6-8) Division between Marquette and Notre Dame. Marquette's goals were scored by Chris Ray, Thomas Arikian and Connor Pfister. The match was exciting to the last minute. Marquette received solid goalkeeping by Liam Gresser and Charlie Wanderer. On the girls' side of the 6-8 division, St. John's topped Marquette 3-1.
In the girls' fourth and fifth grade (4-5) division, Boston College and Villanova also battled to a tie. The final score was 2-2. Marquette got off to a fast start against St. John's and won 5-0.
On the boys' side of the 4-5 division, John Boyle's two goals powered Villanova to a 4-1 triumph over Seton Hall. Andrew Sullivan also scored and Kyle Connolly had 3 assists. Dillon Beehler had a strong game in goal.
Also in boys' 4-5 action, St. John's started off the spring season with a 3- 2 win over Marquette. Luca Bartoli gave a give and go to James Carlton who scored the first goal. Mario Kennedy dribbled the ball down the line and gave a cross to Kyle Hoffman who was able to find the net for SJU's second goal. Michael Belletiere closed the game with the third goal to keep SJU in the lead.
Eric Potter and Matt LaSorsa stepped up and did a fine job in goal. Danny Lynch, Luca Bartoli and Joey Morelli were on fire with their strong defensive plays in the backfield.
In the second to third grade divisions, Villanova came up two goals short on both sides of the aisle. The Notre Dame boys topped the Wildcats 2-0 while the St. John's girls outscored them 4-2. Breanne McDonnell got things started off a beautiful pass from Kaleigh Gilroy. A follow-up goal by Lilliana Bartoli, who was waiting in the wings in perfect position, put St. John's ahead 2-0.
But Villanova's Katie Marquardt, on a strong breakaway against the wind, put the score at 2-1. Katie Barrett then put one in with moments to go in the first half with St. John's up 3-1. The strong defense of Marie Baron, Kerrianne Blum and Therese Kiernan kept Villanova at bay. Villanova pressed on in the second half, now with the winds at their back, and quickly put another goal in to bring the score to 3-2. Villanova was able to keep the ball in front of the St. John's net but was unable to convert. Alex Dadario made a tremendous save, sending the ball out of the trenches, preventing the tieing goal. Later in the half, Sinead Gallagher was able to break free and put one in the net for St. John's.
Also in girls' 2-3, Notre Dame won their first match against Boston College by a score of 3-1. The goal scoring started with tremendous passing by Makayla Beehler to Meagan Duffy who placed the ball on the foot of Caroline Kelly who blasted it past the Boston goalie making it 1-0.
The second goal started when Brianna Bernath stopped a rush by Boston, passed the ball to Jillian Howard who slipped past the defense, passed the ball to Rebecca Boland who snapped the back of the net making it 2-0.
Boston came back with a goal to make it 2-1. The final goal happened when the midfield of Daniella Di Carlo stopped Jillian Marchado, passed the ball to Gianna Grillo who dribbled around two players, made a solid pass to Caroline Kelly who slid it past the goalie for her second of the game, clinching the victory. Outstanding defense this game was played by Roberta Culleton and Kaitlyn Ryan.
This year's cup began quickly in the boys' fourth and fifth division with the Boston team providing too much offensive power for Notre Dame. Boston won 8-2. Boston scored two quick goals in the first 3 minutes on great passes from Jonathan Machado to Billy Reed who found the back of the net for a 2-0 lead.
Boston continued their relentless attack led by Machado scoring the next five goals unassisted.
Notre Dame was led by Damon Andersen who scored the team's first goal and Joseph Carruba who also scored for Notre Dame. The Boston defense of James McManus and Benjamin Edwards held the Notre Dame team in check for most of the game.
HEADERS: The Peninsula Cup is a joint effort between the Blessed Trinity and St. Francis de Sales parishes.
By mixing rosters and coaches, the league promotes friendship between the Rockaway children who compete against each other in the CYO league ...Previous years' teams were named in honor of World Cup participants and European Champions League teams ...
The Peninsula Cup requires a great deal of work and sacrifices from many parents and young coaches, and the tireless efforts of a core few.
Thank you to Commissioner Bill Dunn, Anthony DiCarlo and Guy Maranga for setting up four fields in Fort Tilden (up from 3) and to Linda Humphrey for making and donating the new field signs ... To keep up with Peninsula Cup action and news, visit http://home.earthlink.net/~pcs2009.