Weekly Feature

2017-09-13 / Sports

NT boys soccer remains unbeaten through six

by PATRICK J. NAGY
Reporter

The strong start to the 2017 season continued for the North Tonawanda boys soccer team with wins over Kenmore West, 4-3, at home Sept. 6 and at Niagara Falls, 5-1, Saturday.

NT is 5-0-1 overall and 3-0-1 in the Niagara Division of the Niagara-Frontier League.

Co-head coach Rob Brocklehurst said a key to the team’s early success is controlling the tempo and playing strong for 80 minutes.

Four different goal scorers contributed against Kenmore West.

Colin Archibald started the Lumberjacks’ scoring with a penalty kick in the opening minute.

Goals by Tyler MacNeil, assisted by Archibald, and a left-footed shot by Jared Zadzilka, assisted by David Powell, at the seven- and eight-minute marks, increased NT’s lead to 3-0.

Powell, a defensive stopper, got into the mix on offense with NT’s fourth goal at the 14-minute mark, assisted by Archibald, putting the Lumberjacks ahead 4-1.

Goalie Carson Essenburg made six saves for the shutout.

“He played very composed and controlled our defense,” Brocklehurst said. “I’m pleased with how he has become a leader.”

Niagara Falls’ Matt Owens scored two minutes into the game but the Lumberjacks stuck to their game plan and got the equalizer when Archibald tallied at the 25-minute mark.

Mason Kelly scored the go-ahead goal 10 minutes later, assisted by Zach Yim.

“Mason was injured during the Tonawanda Tournament earlier this season, so he has been fighting for playing time at left outside midfield,” Brocklehurst said. “He was in the right place at the right time.”

MacNeil, Archibald and Matthew Grigg all scored in the second half. Archibald and Zadzilka each had an assist.

Archibald, a junior, leads the entire NFL with 10 goals and four assists.

“I have been impressed with his confidence at handling the ball,” Brocklehurst said. “He really has the ability to make the players around him better.”

NT traveled to NFL Frontier Division leader Kenmore East Tuesday, but information about the game was unavailable before press time. They host Lewiston-Porter at 7 p.m. Friday.

Tonawanda boys soccer

The Warriors evened their record at 2-2-1 overall with a 4-0 home shutout over Medina/Lyndonville Sept. 5.

“After we lost to Alden the previous week, we wanted to bounce back and get a good win under our belt,” Tonawanda coach J.J. Gabor said.

Hayden Lilly beat a defender for a 50-50 ball and scored the only goal of the first half, assisted by Aaron Holler, at the 18-minute mark.

Alex Taylor (Hunter Holler), Austin Kislowski (Nick Gardner) and Holler (Pat Carney) all scored in the second half. Taylor’s goal was on a half volley from 25 yards away, Kislowski scored on a header off a corner kick for his first varsity goal, and Holler passed a bouncing ball past the keeper.

Goalie Devon Carey made five saves for the shutout.

Tonawanda hosted Holland Monday, but information about the game was unavailable before press time. Tonawanda hosts Lackawanna at 7 p.m. Wednesday and Cheektowaga at 5 p.m. Friday and travels to Depew at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

North Tonawanda girls soccer

The Lady Lumberjacks improved to 3-1 with a 4-2 road win over Kenmore West Sept. 6 and a 5-0 home victory over Niagara Falls Saturday morning.

NT was tied with Kenmore West at 1-1 early in the second half before the Lady Lumberjacks scored three times to put the game away.

“Kenmore West came out strong, but once my kids started to pass the ball around and play our game, we were all right,” NT coach Hannah Crouch said.

Isabella Finley led North Tonawanda with two goals and two assists.

“She’s a huge target in the middle for us,” Crouch said. “She is just so powerful that once she gets the ball, there are not many girls who are going to stop her.”

Macey Gioeli’s goal at the 19th minute of the second half was the game winner. She also assisted on Finley’s goal in the first half.

Elizabeth Ambrusko tallied the team’s fourth goal, assisted by Emily Hooley.

Eighth-grader Jordan Hummel made five saves for her first varsity win in net.

“She played very aggressive and confident, so it was nice to see her come out and have success like that,” Crouch said.

Against Niagara Falls, Finley tallied two goals and an assist; Alyssa Kissel scored a goal and added two assists; eighth-grader Kylie Miranto netted her first varsity goal at the 23-minute mark of the first half; Bridget Wilson tallied a goal; and Emily Barone had an assist.

“We played up tempo and passed the ball around,” Crouch said.

Erin Sammarco and Hummel combined for five saves for the shutout. Crouch noted the defense of Wilson, Samantha DalPorto and Barone for denying Niagara Falls shots on net.

NT hosted City Honors Monday and Kenmore East Tuesday, but information about the games was unavailable before press time. They travel to Lewiston-Porter at 7 p.m. Friday.

Tonawanda girls soccer

The Lady Warriors had no problems with John F. Kennedy Sept. 6, recording a 10-2 home win.

“It was an overall strong team performance and we moved the ball really well,” coach Angela Nicholas-Tolsma said.

JFK scored first, but Hope Balling answered for Tonawanda with three straight goals.

Tonawanda led 5-2 at halftime.

Balling finished with four goals and an assist. Trinity Oliver recorded a hat trick and an assist. Taylor Hollock scored twice and posted an assist. Baylin Tighe had a goal and three assists.

Kelsey Pohzehl, Heather Henderson and Zoe Oliver each had an assist.

Tonawanda (4-1) travels to Lackawanna at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday and Holland at 7 p.m. Friday at Holland Middle School.

email: pnagy@beenews.com

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