NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – New Providence hold off two Oratory comebacks to beat the Rams 5-4 Tuesday afternoon.
It took less than 90 seconds for the Pioneers to get on the board when Brendan Regan got one past Oratory goalie William Skinner. No more than a minute later, Chris Kang netted another one for New Providence,
The game settled into a rhythm after the two quick goals, but the Pioneers were able to find the back of the net once again in the twelfth minute on a Shane Mahlstadt shot from inside the box.
Oratory had opportunities to score in the first half, but New Providence goalkeeper Dillon Konzelmann brilliantly defended the goal, turning away nine shots in the game.
Facing a three-goal deficit to start the second half, Oratory started to chip away at New Providence’s lead, largely thanks to an AJ Kopacz hat trick. Kopacz’s first goal of the game came in the forty-seventh minute on a corner kick that passed right in front of the goal that he was able to head in.
Kopacz scored once more before the Pioneers were able to answer, which they did with two more goals. Ben Peng and Matt Byrnes each tacked on a goal, with Byrnes’ coming on a penalty kick.
Leading 5-2, New Providence gave up two more goals to the Rams, who were not going down without a fight. Oratory’s fourth goal came from Kopacz with under two minutes left in the game, erasing the Pioneers second three-goal lead of the game. New Providence was able to hold on in the final seconds to secure the 5-4 victory.
The Pioneers will travel to Roselle Catholic this Friday to take on the Lions at 4 p.m.