Bruins beat Seahawks on PKs
Broadneck advances after ‘gritty’ defensive struggle
Penalty kicks are often described as a cruel and unfair way to end a game, but they sure make for great theater. Trevor Wiggins has enjoyed the show twice this season already for Broadneck.
Wiggins, Joey Aman and Joseph Velasquez made their penalty kicks, while South River was stopped once and went high on its two other attempts as the Bruins defeated the Seahawks in penalty kicks, 3-0, to win their Class 4A East Region Section II semifinal on Tuesday.
Broadneck (10-5) will play the winner of Leonardtown and North Point in the section final Friday. They will travel to Leonardtown or host North Point.
“I thought we played a very gritty game from start to end,” Broadneck coach Sean Tettemer said. “Penalty kicks are strange. They can be high or low, fast or slow, and I thought Fred [Hill] gave us the momentum with his stop on their first chance, and Aman coming in and burying his kick gave us even more momentum.”
Both teams had their defensive form set from the opening whistle, and getting a goal certainly proved to be difficult.
“I think Sean, as well as myself, we pride ourselves on having organization in the back and making it difficult to score,” South River coach Jeff Vincent said.
The first real opportunity came with 7 minutes, 30 seconds left in the first half, when Aman found John Vasquez for a shot that sent South River (10-4-2) goalkeeper Kyle Berkowitz to the ground. Berkowitz also ably stopped a Velasquez header early in the second half and made four saves overall. The Seahawks finished the season allowing just five goals in 16 games.
Meanwhile, South River (10-4-2) could not crack the Bruins’ back line either. When Vasquez was issued his second yellow card in an eight-minute span in the second half, Broadneck suddenly found itself down to 10 men with 12 minutes left in regulation.
“Once we went down a man, we kind of woke up even more in terms of understanding the need to commit to defense,” Tettemer said. “We wanted to do that and then hopefully get a goal in the run of play or off a restart. Our guys bought into that and knew they had to do whatever they could to get a result.”
The Bruins actually came closer as a team in the closing minutes of the second half, as well as both overtime sessions. Broadneck goalkeeper Frederick Hill made a stop late, and also had four saves.
“I had confidence in my guys,” Hill said. “As long as we went to overtime, we were not going to lose.”
Brady Zacker was subbed in for Berkowitz with two minutes remaining in the second overtime, as his length advantage would hopefully come in handy for South River when it came to kicks. After a short break, the penalty kick stage ensued, with Jared Mundie taking the long walk to the box to face Hill. Mundie’s shot was low and to Hill’s right, and the sophomore made the stop.
“I knew where that first penalty kick was going to go; I was confident I was going the right way,” Hill said.
Aman came up and fired his shot into the upper right corner. Velasquez came up next after a Seahawks miss and finished in the lower right. After another South River miss, Wiggins came up with the chance to close. His penalty kick in overtime gave the Bruins a 1-0 victory over South River on Sept. 22, and now, his hard shot high in the middle would end the game.
“You just clear your mind and focus on the task at hand,” Wiggins said. “The odds are in your favor so just put it away. We are a resilient team in general and will find a way to win.”
Tettemer credits his team’s defensive turnaround in the second half of the season for why they are playing Friday night.