SUMMIT, NJ - A week that began with the Summit High School Boys Varsity Soccer Team cracking one media outlet's rankings of the state's top 20 teams and which continued with the Hilltoppers receiving a lofty number-two seed in the Union County Tournament, did not end in the fashion that the Maroon and White was hoping and anticipating.
After dropping a 4-0 decision to highly-ranked Elizabeth at home, The 'Top was looking to bounce back with a strong, spirited effort in a 'Summit Derby' match at Oratory Prep. That was the plan, but there's a reason there is a saying that begins "The best laid plans..."
Summit began the match flat and stayed that way. The Rams, on other hand, looked switched on and crisp. That blended dynamic delivered a 3-nil Oratory victory, their first win over the Hilltoppers in nearly a decade. For Summit, the result dropped their 2019 season slate to 6-4-1.
Nicholas Jardim scored twice, Marcelo Freire also found the back of the net, and goalkeeper Jack Coyne was credited with six saves to pace the Rams.
The majority of the Oratory Prep damage was done in an opening 40 minutes that saw all the half's chances created by the home team. Two of those chances went in and, when the second goal arrived --- off a corner kick -- it triggered a celebration that saw Oratory's 10 outfield players racing over to leap into their student section.
Any hopes the Summit faithful in attendance had of a second-half comeback were dashed when the home team scored their third. The only drama that remained was whether Oratory could keep the clean, which Coyne and his teammates accomplished.
Summit will have a bit of time to think about the outcome as they are not back in action until October 7 when they travel to Cranford for a 4 p.m. kick-off.