Boys soccer starts winning streak
The Parkland boys soccer team can finally say that it is on a winning streak during the 2018 season. After drawing with Central Catholic in the season opener and then defeating rival Emmaus in the next game, the Trojans lost two of their next three games.
But after a 3-1 win over Pocono Mountain East last Saturday, Parkland (4-2-1 overall, 3-1-1 EPC Skyline) found its first win streak of the 2018 regular season after taking down Whitehall 4-0 Monday night at Parkland High School in an Eastern Pennsylvania Conference Skyline Division game.
The Trojans scored three second half goals to put away the Zephyrs (3-3-1, 2-3) after leading by just one goal (1-0) at halftime.
“The second half was a completely different half for us,” said Parkland head coach Patrick Birns. “We created more scoring opportunities with our movement on and off the ball. It was important to add onto that one-goal lead because Whitehall is a great team and can score at any time. They showed that with their scoring chances all game.”
On a rainy night, the game had the feel of a low-scoring affair. And that’s how the first half played out.
Parkland out-shot Whitehall 6-1 in the first half, but only three of those six shots were on goal. The Trojans finally broke through with under 12 minutes left when Chris Wood sent in a low cross into the 18-yard box that was met by a powerful strike from Logan Sosik with 11:54 to go.
“Logan’s goal gave the team confidence going into the half,” Birns said. “I thought that it gave us a spark that we needed going into the break.”
The Trojans were firing on all cylinders to the tune of three goals in 30 minutes.
Senior Zach Vozzo, junior Alex Wilsterman and freshman Zack Reightler all found the back of the net in the second half to stake the Trojans to a commanding four-goal lead. The defense, led by senior captain center backs Connor Burke and Nathan Berger kept the Zephyrs scoring opportunities at a low, allowing just four shots and two corner kicks.
Sophomore goalie Victor Baran finished with four saves.
Brian Badawika, Justin Douglas and Yuzuki Murata all contributed second half assists.
It was an important game for Parkland, not only to start a win streak and win a conference game, but because the Zephyrs were neck-and-neck with them in the standings.
“We stress divisional games, so this was a big win for us,” said Birns. “They have one of the best players in the league in Aziz Atiyeh. They throw a lot of players forward at us, which causes communication problems for our team.”
Parkland travels to take on Stroudsburg Thursday in an EPC clash.