Phoenixville pounds PJP to take con­trol in Fron­tier

Phan­toms cel­e­brate Se­nior Night, hand PJP its first divi­sional loss

The Phoenix - - SPORTS - By Austin Hert­zog ahert­zog@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @AustinHert­zog on Twit­ter

It was Se­nior Night at Phoenixville and the Phan­toms boys soc­cer team wanted to put on a per­for­mance.

Their sup­port­ers were in for a treat.

The free-flow­ing Phan­toms put an as­sault on the Pope John Paul II net in a matchup of un­beaten teams in the Pioneer Ath­letic Con­fer­ence Fron­tier Di­vi­sion, ul­ti­mately rolling up a 3-1 vic­tory over the Golden Pan­thers-Mon­day night atWash­ing- ton Field.

Af­ter PJP sur­prised Phoenixville with a coun­ter­at­tack goal ig­nited by for­ward Colin Flane­gin who as­sisted Sal Marano less than four min­utes into the game, the Phan­toms were a force from there with TJ Stevens lev­el­ing the game mid­way through the first half be­fore Jared Car­boy was on the dou­ble in the sec­ond half with a pair of goals.

“For us we’re al­ways ex­cited to at­tack. That’s the best part of the game. We love at­tack­ing. We cre­ate a lot of chances and we

want to be a team that – you see all the sup­port­ers – peo­ple like com­ing out and see­ing,” said se­nior mid­fielder Kyle Tucker.

Tucker, who for­merly played at the academy level with Con­ti­nen­tal FC Delco, has bol­stered a deep se­nior class that saw 13 hon­ored Mon­day night. The mid­fielder joined with Car­boy, Stevens and Danny Jackson to spear­head a ram­pag­ing at­tack.

“I feel like our chem­istry has in­creased,” Car­boy said of the team’s pro­gres-

sion since last sea­son. “We have so many se­niors on the team and we’re close friends. Be­ing all to­gether on the same field, es­pe­cially with Kyle this year, I think we’re able to stay con­fi­dent and re­ally get ex­cited for th­ese games and pull out re­sults.”

Phoenixville (6-0 Fron­tier, 8-1 PAC, 11-1-1 over­all) was de­serv­ing of at least three goals. They had 17 shots on goal (to 3 from PJP) and 28 at­tempts on goal.

“I thought we started re­ally strong and thought we looked like the bet­ter team. We made one mis­take and they pun­ished us,” Tucker said. “PJP is a good team.

No. 11 (Flane­gin) is a qual­ity player andwe let himget free. Mis­takes like that can kill you against big teams. But our at­tack was great and we de­served even­more than three goals.”

The pri­mary rea­son for that was PJP goal­keeper John Wag­ner, who was bril­liant in a 14-save evening. His finest se­quence may have been when the Phan­toms got their break­through 19 min­utes into the game. Wag­ner, a ju­nior, made an in­cred­i­ble dou­ble-save against Stevens, the first sav­ing a no-doubt header at the far post. But Stevens stuck with the ball in a scram­ble and poked it home to level the match 1-1.

“We were feel­ing lucky,” said PJP coach Tom Csongradi of be­ing level at half­time. “They dom­i­nated the whole first half. Af­ter their first goal we kind of shut down. We were start­ing to be quiet and needed to pick up the level and we didn’t do it. Their shoot­ing was off tar­get to­day so we dodged a lot of bul­lets.”

Car­boy didn’t miss 11 min­utes into the sec­ond half when Stevens found him on a di­ag­o­nal run on the left side of the penalty area. The se­nior hit a smooth, low roller to the far post pastWag­ner for the 2-1 lead.

Car­boy got his sec­ond with 18:41 re­main­ing with

a low, volleyed blast from 30 yards that trick­led past Wag­ner for the 3-1 lead and the fi­nal mar­gin.

The stats might in­di­cate oth­er­wise, but the Golden Pan­thers (5-1 Fron­tier, 5-4 PAC, 5-5 over­all) played with a good amount of grit with Brett Leighton andMichael Harty bol­ster­ing the de­fen­sive ef­fort.

De­spite be­ing sent to their third straight loss, Csongradi hopes his team can take heart in the per­for­mance.

“Our last two games we didn’t play well and we lost,” he said. “To­day we lost but we played a whole lot bet­ter. From that per­spec­tive, it’s go­ing to bump us

up in con­fi­dence.”

Con­fi­dence, es­pe­cially af­ter Mon­day night, won’t be a prob­lem for the Phan­toms.

NOTES » With their first meet­ing post­poned to the sec­ond leg of the league sched­ule, the Phan­toms and Pan­thers meet again in just one week, on Oct. 9. ... Phoenixville en­tered the week ranked No. 4 in the Dis­trict 1-AAA power rank­ings. PJP is No. 10 ... Phoenixville’s 13 se­niors in­cluded goalie Josh Pfender (three saves), Jackson, Blake Erick­sen, Tyler Siefer, Velkin Es­co­bar, Tucker, Sean O’Neill, Yair Ibarra, Nick Si­napius, Felix Maiduro, Alex Bow­man, Car­boy and Dan Hey­man.

AUSTIN HERT­ZOG — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Phoenixville’s Jared Car­boy re­acts af­ter scor­ing his team’s sec­ond goal in the sec­ond half Mon­day against Pope John Paul II.

AUSTIN HERT­ZOG — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Phoenixville’s Kyle Tucker, left, is fouled by Pope John Paul II’s AJ Wil­liams dur­ing the first half Mon­day.

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