Jamie Snyder scored the only goal of Thursday's match...a double overtime epic that lasted nearly 100 minutes between Paupack and Honesdale. The loss was devastating to the Hornets, who've won just once in Lackawanna League action this fall.
The looks on their faces told the story.
Wallenpaupack Area had just dealt archrival Honesdale a 1-0 double overtime loss in an epic Lackawanna League soccer match. While the Buckhorns celebrated, the Hornets trudged slowly off the field to a hearty round of applause from the Maple City faithful.
“I’m heartbroken for my kids,” Coach Jeff Wander told TWI Sports. “They were exhausted. They played their hearts out and lost. As a coach, that’s so hard to take.”
After 95 minutes of non-stop action, Jamie Snyder scored the game’s lone goal. It came on a tantalizingly beautiful chip from just inside the 18, barely clearing Steven Decker’s outstretched hands and somehow slipping under the crossbar.
“The ball seemed to hang in the air forever,” said Coach Wander. “But, I just knew that it was going in. Give the kid credit: it was a heck of a shot.”
With this disappointing loss, Honesdale’s record fell to 1-7 in the rugged Lackawanna League. Paupack has now won back-to-back games for the first time this season. The Bucks are currently 3-6 in Division One.
Next up for the Hornets are two straight road trips. The Red & Black travel to Blue Ridge this morning for a 10:00 a.m. battle with the Raiders. Honesdale returns to action Tuesday afternoon at North Pocono (4:30 p.m.).
The first time these two teams played was back on September 3rd. That initial meeting was nearly a carbon copy of Thursday’s match.
John Kilduff played the hero’s role in Week One. Paupack’s freshman forward weaved his way around three Hornet defenders, then tallied an unusual goal off a deflection. Kilduff’s miraculous shot came just over a minute into overtime and gave the Bucks a 2-1 win.
In the re-match, Honesdale and Paupack played a very physical first half. Yellow cards were handed out to players on both sides, but the action was anything but dirty.
“After it was all over, one of the referees told me this was the best match he’d called so far this season,” said Coach Wander. “It was physical and aggressive, but it was really well-played.”
Steven Decker and Chris Schneider put on a keeping clinic, much to the dismay of offensive players on both sides.
Decker is a battle tested senior who’s developed into one of the division’s top keepers. Steven turned away a pair of Paupack attacks late in the first half, twice leaping high in the air to snare a Buckhorn shot on goal.
Schneider was equally impressive between the pipes. Paupack’s sophomore sensation continually frustrated Hornet strikers by anticipating their next move. Aaron Kelly made two kamikaze runs at the net, only to come up empty.
“We moved the ball very well in the first half,” Coach Wander said. “But, we’re a little bit timid about shooting sometimes. You can’t score if you don’t shoot and I really want us to put more pressure on their defense.”
Coach Wander felt from the outset that this match would be decided by a single goal. He worried that his players’ reluctance to attack the net might come back to haunt them... and he was right.
Over & Out
Despite Coach Wander’s continual urging, Honesdale still managed to mount just a handful of offensive assaults.
Nate Hoff turned in a solid, sometimes emotional, performance in the midfield. Kelly led the charge up front, while Aaron Diamond and Eric Diehl anchored the defense.
Schneider was called upon to make just seven saves in nearly 100 minutes of action. Decker carded 11 stops for Honesdale.
“You have to have alot of respect for these young athletes,” said Coach Wander in conclusion. “I don’t know how many kids in other sports could survive 95 minutes of continuous wind sprints. I’m very proud of their effort.”
Score by Periods...
HON 0 0 0 0 - 0
WAL 0 0 0 1 - 1