Late goal ex­plo­sion pro­pels Spar­rows Point past Dun­dalk

The Dundalk Eagle - - SPORTS AND RECREATION - By BILL GATES bgates@ches­pub.com Fol­low me on Twit­ter @DEa­gle_s­ports

Af­ter nearly 63 goal-free min­utes, Spar­rows Point and vis­it­ing Dun­dalk sud­denly seemed to re-dis­cover their re­spec­tive scor­ing touches just as over­time started to seem in­evitable.

The two teams com­bined for six goals in the last 17 min­utes. Zach Lam­bert had three of them, spark­ing the Point­ers to a 4-2 win over the Owls on Oct. 17.

Dun­dalk broke the score­less tie with a goal off a free kick by Marco Her­nan­dez with 17:25 re­main­ing in the game.

When the Owls scored again to take a 2-1 lead with eight min­utes re­main­ing, it seemed Dun­dalk was go­ing to grab its sec­ond con­sec­u­tive win over Spar­rows Point.

Un­til Zach Lam­bert spent the last seven min­utes scor­ing ... and scor­ing ... and scor­ing again.

Lam­bert’s first goal came 40 sec­onds af­ter No. 6 had given Dun­dalk that 2-1 lead. With a de­fender in pur­suit, Zach came down the right side, got the goal­keeper to com­mit too early, and poked the ball past him to tie th e score.

So — still over­time com­ing, right? Nope; a lit­tle more than a minute af­ter he tied the game, Lam­ber t found him­self un­cov­ered on the left side and slammed the ball off the bounce and into the net.

Lam­bert’s third goal all but sealed the Pointer vic­tory, com­ing with 2:39 re­main­ing and again off a shot taken while Lam­bert was wide open.

“We didn’t plan on wait­ing un­til the last 15 min­utes to score; it just kind of hap­pened,” said Spar­rows Point coach Joe Lam­bert, Zach’s fa­ther. “We couldn’t get much go­ing of­fen­sively for 40-50 min­utes, but nei­ther could they.

“Then they scored on a nice free kick and it kind of woke both teams up.”

The loss knocked Dun­dalk (5-6-1) out of the third seed in the Class 3A North Re­gion Sec­tion II play­offs and into the sixth seed.

That means, af­ter open­ing at Aberdeen in the open­ing round on Fri­day, the Owls must travel to top-seeded C. Mil­ton Wright in the sec­ond round, should they win.

Spar­rows Point (7-3-2) is seeded third in the Class 1A North Re­gion Sec­tion I and will host Carver A&T on Fri­day. Then, the de­fend­ing state cham­pion Point­ers will ei­ther host Pikesville or play at sec­ond-seeded Western Tech.

The only game that will likely mat­ter is the sec­tional fi­nal on Nov. 2 against fourth­seeded Loch Raven.

The Point­ers beat the Raiders 2-1 ear­lier this sea­son.

“They have a qual­ity team,” Joe lam­bert said. “When we played them dur­ing the reg­u­lar sea­son, it was a pretty evenly-matched game.

“They’ve had some re­ally good re­sults this sea­son.”

Dun­dalk has been all over the place this sea­son, los­ing to Loch Raven but beat­ing a Ca­tonsville team that beat Spar­rows Point and play­ing a close game against the East­ern Tech team that dom­i­nated Spar­rows Point.

“I knew Dun­dalk would have a good team,” Joe Lam­bert said. “We just re­ally didn’t want to lose on our Se­nior Night.”

Pat­ap­sco (4-8) ended the reg­u­lar sea­son with a 4-1 loss to East­ern Tech on Oct. 17.

The Pa­tri­ots are seeded seventh in the Class 3A North Re­gion Sec­tion II play­offs and will open the post­sea­son at sec­ond­seeded Bel Air on Fri­day.

PHO­TOS BY BILL GATES

Ben Hester of Spar­rows Point and Dun­dalk’s Pre­cil­liano Lu­jan bat­tle for a ball in the air.

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