Canaan Christian Academy's boys varsity soccer squad is perfect so far in NY-Penn action
Canaan Christian Academy's boys varsity soccer team is off to a scintillating start this fall.
The Eagles are unbeaten in NY-Penn League action after posting a pair of wild wins in recent days.
Under the watchful eye of veteran head coach John Ashley, the local lads powered their way to a 6-2 victory over Triboro. They followed that up with a 5-4 decision over Lebanon.
“It didn't take long for us to solve the defense of a young Triboro team,” said Coach Ashley. “So, I made sure to play all of our boys in the second half.
The Lebanon match, though, was an entirely different story.
“This was a crazy and exciting game right from the start,” Coach Ashley said. “We were back on our heels a little bit early on, but the boys responded.”
With these wins, Canaan improved its record to 4-0-0 for the year. Next up for the Eagles are home games against Triboro and away matches at Ross Corners.
Action gets underway at 3:30 p.m.
Early & Often
Canaan wasted little time in unleashing its offensive juggernaut against the team from Old Forge.
The Eagles roared out to a 4-0 lead, then coasted to an eventual 6-2 decision.
Cory May ignited the attack, hammering home an unassisted goal just three minutes into the match.
Jared Swartley increased the Eagles' lead to 2-0 ten minutes later with a goal courtesy of an Aden Swartley assist.
Joel Edwards made it 3-0 in favor of Canaan midway through first half. Edwards snagged a pinpoint pass from Branden “Dwight” Wittenbrader and deposited it in the back of the net.
Willy McWhorter closed out the Eagles' early scoring via an unassisted goal with five minutes left before intermission.
Triboro's youngsters showed promise after the break, notching a pair of goals against Canaan's second teamers. However, the local lads reasserted control as time wound down.
May notched his second goal of the game in highlight reel fashion. Cory soared high above Triboro defenders and headed home a beautiful cross provided by Aden Swartley.
Edwards put the finishing touches on this win, tallying one last goal courtesy of a Mike Lamberton assist.
The Eagles went right on the offensive against an unbeaten Lebanon squad, peppering the enemy net with three shots in the first minute of play.
However, Panthers keeper Jeremiah Griffith was equal to the task. He snuffed out the Canaan assault, then promptly set up the counterattack.
Moments later, Lebanon grabbed a 1-0 lead when Nate Ebling found the back of the Eagles' net.
For the next 10 minutes, the two teams battled back and forth before Canaan finally tied things up.
May continued his torrid scoring streak, emerging from a scrum in front of the net and beating Griffith for the goal.
May struck again just five minute later, scoring his second goal of the match off an assist by teammate Jared Swartley.
Cory completed his Hat Trick with another tally as time ticked down in the first half. This time the goal came via a textbook cross from Joe Hunter.
“I thought it would be 3-1 at the half, but a defensive miscue with just 10 seconds left led to disaster,” Coach Ashley said.
Ebling once again did the damage, beating Canaan keeper Dan Grant and narrowing the margin to 3-2 at intermission.
Hunter and Edwards worked tirelessly to gain control of the midfield for CCA. And, all that effort eventually paid off when Hunter found Swartley with a through-ball and Jared did the rest. His goal in the 24th minute gave the Eagles a 4-2 advantage.
Lebanon refused to fold, though, closing the gap to 4-3. Seven minutes later, the Panthers knotted the score at four.
“It was right about then that I wished soccer had timeouts,” Coach Ashley said with a smile. “It really looked like we were headed to overtime, but that's when the 'Play of the Day' took place.”
Once again it was May playing the hero's role.
Hunter got things going with a perfect pass to David Hughes, which turned out to be a fortuitous decision.
“David is speedy and slippery,” Coach Ashley said. “I started him out this year in the midfield, but moved him to fullback to help strengthen our back line. David is a very smart player.”
Hughes raced to the flag, drew defenders to him, and lofted a high arcing pass to the far post. Not surprisingly, May was there waiting. Cory once again rose above the fray and headed the ball home.
May's fourth goal of the match proved to be the game-winner and it came with only 29 seconds left in regulation.