Indian Comeback Falls Short vs. Huskers

Augie Djerdjaj pushes the pace against Yorktown. Credits: Isaac Cass

YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, N.Y.— After falling in the section final twice in the previous three years, Yorktown’s boys soccer squad entered 2017 laser-focused on its ultimate goal. 

“We just want to finally win that one section title and then even beyond,” senior forward Besim Bucpapa said.

Based on last Wednesday’s 3-1 win over visiting Mahopac, the Huskers (3-1-1) appear well on their way to challenging for Section 1 Class AA hardware. 

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Yorktown, which features a robust 29-man roster, showcased its depth against the Indians, rotating players in and out to find the right matchups while also keeping fresh legs on the pitch.

“This year, the team all bought in,” Husker coach Ed Polchinski said. “If I put another player in, the level isn’t dropping down. I feel very comfortable about that. We just keep trying to wear the other team down.”

Yorktown never trailed against the Indians, jumping out to a 1-0 lead in the fifth minute behind a goal from Bucpapa, who was sprung loose by a perfectly weighted 40-yard through ball from midfielder Ankit Patel. Bucpapa craftily chipped the ball over Mahopac’s charging keeper and effortlessly finished the ensuing empty-net chance.

For Mahopac, it was instantly an uphill battle.

“Going down 1-0 is tough—especially early,” Indians coach Jim Gencarelli said. “It kind of threw us for a loop a little bit. But I thought we played well and created a lot of chances. We just had a little too much on the ball. We have to take better shots and finish.”

Senior winger Joey Carbone doubled Yorktown’s lead in the 53rd minute, slotting home a cross from Chris Guzman on the far post.

Tommy Pereira got Mahopac on the board in the 62nd minute, converting a penalty kick to briefly heighten the match’s intensity and drama.

“The momentum completely shifted and we felt it,” Carbone said.

Carbone allowed the Huskers to breathe easy, burying a penalty kick roughly three minutes later to put the victory on ice. Tim O’Callaghan earned the PK after getting taken down in the box.

Mahopac also secured a homecoming win over Friday evening, doubling up rival Carmel, 4-2. Niko DeCola notched two goals and one assist, while Augie Djerdjaj added one goal and one assist. James O’Brien rounded out the scoring with a goal. Keepers Kevin Valdes and Joe Muratore combined to make 10 saves.

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