On Monday, July 9, Week 4 of the Weston Adult Soccer League season kicked off with a battle between Team Britz and subLIME.
Team Britz, coming off a heartbreaking tie, was hungry, looking for its first victory of the season, while subLIME, also fresh off a tie, was looking to get back to its winning ways.
subLIME conceded the first goal of the game, as Team Britz crossed a corner kick into the box off the leg of Tony McNulty that found the head of subLIME but then went directly to the foot of Roger Silva, who found the back of the net.
Adding to subLIME’s difficult start, leading stopper, Father Valentine, went down with a knee injury, and his back-up stopper, A.J. Taccone, also left the field with a pulled hamstring.
Team Britz also lost star midfielder, Jordan Ellis, midway through the game.
But adversity is what subLIME feeds on. About 10 minutes after the goal, sure-footed Danny Meyers led a stupendous two-man play — with Eric Nalbandian finding the back of the net. Nalbandian wasn’t done yet, and managed to put one more in before the half, to give his team a 2-1 edge.
The second half was full of opportunities both ways. subLIME’s defense held tough with great goalkeeping by Ursula, tremendous wing play from rookie’s Clare Robinson and Jess Matsuoka and veterans Saul and Cormac Byrne, while Max Story stepped up at stopper.
subLIME continued to press on offense, and leading goal scorer Josh Valentine got in on the action twice before the game was out on beautiful assists from the midfield of Meyers and Nalbandian for a 4-1 final.
Team Shrager 2, Team Clemens 1
On Tuesday, July 10, Team Shrager edged Team Clemens, 2-1.
Larry Lazarides held it down Team Shrager in the midfield and, 20 minutes into the game, Lazarides played a 50-yard ball over the top of Team Clemens defense to Cole Maryiappa, who had made an excellent run into the 18-yard box. Maryiappa’s goal staked his side to a 1-0 halftime edge.
The second half started and Team Clemens’ intensity picked up. They were not going to go down without a fight, as more shots came and more goal posts were hit. Team Shrager felt the pressure.
After 65 minutes of play, Team Clemens stepped up its level of play, as Clemens got a rebound on the 18-yard line and blasted it at the goal. The ball hit the top crossbar and somehow angled into the goal. No one knew for a few seconds if it was a goal or not. The ref made a decision that the entire ball did cross the line and, with 20 minutes left, the game was tied at 1.
With about five minutes left, management made a sub, bringing David DeMattio on for Sam Meyer.
A ball was played from the back to Marryiappa who laid it off to Lazarides in the midfield. Lazarides, tapping into his playmaker vision once again, saw DeMattio making a run behind the Clemens defense and played a perfectly-weighted through ball down the left-hand side.
DeMattio took a touch towards goal and saw he only had to beat one defender. DeMattio cut back hard with the ball right inside the 18. DeMattio then struck the ball to the near post and the keeper, Blees, was unable to make a save. The whistle blew minutes later, with team Shrager coming home with a 2-1 win.
Team Pires 5, Team Dacey 1
The late game on Tuesday, July 10, featured a much-anticipated divisional matchup between Team Dacey (1-1-1) and Team Pires (1-1-1).
Team Pires was nearly at full strength for the first time all season, although it was without starting goalkeeper Joe Decanio and called upon Stan Okoro to mind the net in his absence. Team Dacey introduced center back Luke Simboli to the team for his first game of the season, but were without a few key players, an unlucky trend that has occurred all season.
Team Pires controlled the play in the early going, stringing together passes without looking threatening, while Team Dacey played a more direct, counter-attack style with long balls to strikers Enjo Ba and Matt Scott.
Fifteen minutes into the game, Tom Cools opened the scoring for Team Pires when he picked up a loose ball near the edge of the box and delivered a hard, low strike to beat Dacey keeper Gustavo Raes.
Team Dacey continued to counterattack and had one goal from Matt Scott called back for offside. A few minutes later, Team Dacey would equalize on a long ball from Simboli to Matt Scott that he clinically finished.
Ten minutes later, Team Pires responded, with Jared Gumaer playing a perfect pass on the ground to an open Cools, who buried the shot to give Team Pires a 2-1 lead — which is how the score remained at the end of the first half.
The youth and depth of Team Pires began to wear on Team Dacey in the second half, and Team Pires created numerous quality chances. Chris Crucitti was denied in the box on a quality save from Raes, and on the rebound, got an unlucky bounce from the inside of the post to be denied a second time.
Crucitti would deliver the third goal moments later off a pass from Mike Levene. Team Pires continued its assault and Levene chipped in the fourth goal off a pass from Andre Fankhauser.
David Strider would create the fifth goal, which went in off an unlucky deflection from Steve Murray. Ever the competitor, Dacey did not relent at any point and continued to lead his team on counter attacks, but each time they were stifled by the strong defensive play of center backs Sam Chica and Chris Gasiewski and wingbacks Kenny Guerin, Ed Parker, and Gumaer.
Team Pires would continue to threaten with scoring chances but did not add any further goals, leaving the final tally 5-1.