North Penn surges past Pennridge
Pennridge gave the North Penn boys soccer team an early wake-up call Wednesday afternoon. rnfortunately for the Rams, Alex Evans was there to answer it.
Evans collected a hat trick in the first half as the host Knights scored four times in the opening 40 minutes and cruised to a 5-1 Suburban One League Continental Conference win.
“We were actually kind of fortunate that happened, it got us back in the game,” said Evans of Kris Gross’ goal that put Pennridge up 1-0. “We played better because of it.”
Matt Robinson and Nick Gambone also scored for North Penn (12-4-1, 10-3-1 conferenceF, which earned its fifth straight win.
“I wasn’t happy with our first 20 minutes,” Knights coach Paul Duddy said. “When we went down a goal, I think we started too slow, and there’s just too many good teams out there to do that. But after about 20 minutes, going down a goal then we started really playing well. Got some great goals and pretty heads up play.”
The victory puts the Knights three points ahead of Central Bucks East for second place in the SOL Continental. On Thursday, CB East faces Central Bucks South, which clinched the conference title with its 1-0 win over Souderton Tuesday.
For Pennridge, the loss was its sixth straight as the Rams ended their season 3-14-1 (3-11-0 conferenceF.
“We’ve scored first against CB East, CB South, 0-0 at half with Souderton, the top four teams (in the SOL ContinentalF our second time around with them, we compete, we do well. It’s just a matter of maintaining,” Pennridge coach Pete Valimont said. “It’s just a matter of having the confidence to play a full 80 (minutesF.
“North Penn’s a great team, they’re very skilled. Robinson and Evans up there are two tough kids to beat them. I’ll be happy next year when they’re gone.”
North Penn completes its regular season Friday as it hosts Holy Ghost Prep at 3:45 p.m.
“A lot of people think they’re the best team in the area,” said Duddy of the Firebirds. “So, it’ll be a good matchup on Friday.”
Evans collected the equalizer after Robinson headed forward a Pennridge goal kick, with Evans using a nice touch to place the ball into the back of the net.
“Me and him have being doing that all year, it’s good to see me and him trade off, “Evans said. “Just happened that I did it this time. I’ll get him back.”
Evans’ second tally put the Knights ahead for good, as a ball played by Sean Gorman into the 18-yard box found Evans in traffic for a goal a 2-1 lead.
Robinson added to the North Penn advantage after being taking down in the box for a penalty kick. The senior converted the try with a shot into the lower left corner.
Evans then collected his third goal, beating a Pennridge defender for a ball then blasting it into the top of the net to put North Penn up 4-1.
“It’s great,” Evans said of the hat trick, his first as a Knight. “It’s great to go in the first half and put the team in the position to win.”
Gambone scored North Penn’s fifth goal in the second half, sliding in his shot past the outcoming Rams keeper.
In the first half, Gross staked Pennridge out to the early 1-0 lead after a pass from the right side by Dylan Henry.