Lakeland Blanked by Somers in Boys Soccer Title Game

Dhruv Girgenti and Lakeland's boys soccer team fell to Somers in the finals. Credits: File photo

CORTLANDT MANOR, N.Y. — Top-seeded Somers and No. 2 Lakeland were the two best teams in the 10th Annual Lakeland Boys Summer Soccer League and fittingly played each other in the title game on July 23 at Walter Panas High School.

While the Hornets displayed a lot of potential this summer, Somers showed why it is the defending Class A state champions, recording a 2-0 victory.

For Somers, it was its first summer-league title. Lakeland had previously won the championship in 2014 and 2016.

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Somers had control of most of the possession in the first half, jumping out to a 1-0 lead with 10:51 remaining before halftime.

Lakeland applied pressure later on, as it had at least three solid scoring chances late in the opening half but just couldn’t put it home.

“We just got a little more hungry with getting forward,” Lakeland coach Tim Hourahan said. “The first 10 or 15 minutes—a lot of my kids here are JV kids—I have one kid here that was in the middle school last year and they were, not that they were awestruck, because they don’t know them, but they know they’ve been the best team all summer, so they kind of sat back. Once they got into the game a little bit, they started getting more numbers forward and we created a few chances.”

Somers doubled its lead with 18:02 left in the game though Lakeland continued to fight to the end.
“We had a one-on-one with the goalie. Conor (O’Donoghue) made an unbelievable save with six minutes left, could’ve made it 2-1,” Hourahan said. “Listen, Somers won a state title. In my opinion they are better than they were last year so we know what we are chasing.”

Andre Lopez (3 saves) and Ryan Mathis (1 save) did the honors in goal for the Hornets.

No. 3 Yorktown, which garnered the summer-league title in 2010, won this year’s consolation game by defeating No. 4 Byram Hills 3-0.

“Before the game everyone was talking about how important this game is and that we should go out there and show why we are here,” Yorktown rising senior Ankit Patel said. “It feels good to end the summer league with a win against a really tough opponent.”

Patel led Yorktown to the win in the July 23 contest with two goals with teammate Nick DiGuglielmo also tallying a score.

Besim Bucpapa and Timmy O’Callaghan recorded the assists with Mauricio Arango coming up with three big saves for the Huskers.

“The team played really well in the summer league and we got the results,” said Patel, who probably will play attacking or defensive midfielder come the regular season.

Lakeland earned its trip to the championship game by defeating Yorktown 1-0 in the semifinals at Valhalla High School on July 20.

Hornet Matt Bussell, with an assist from Carlos Del Monte, scored the game’s winning goal. Lakeland’s Mathis (3 saves) and Lopez (2 saves) and Yorktown’s Arango (3 saves) and James D’Alessio (2 saves) played well in goal for their respective teams.

In the quarterfinals on July 18 at Panas, Yorktown (6-3-1) nipped No. 6 Briarcliff in penalty kicks 4-3 after tying the game 2-2 in regulation.

Patel and O’Callaghan both scored, Pat Boyle tallied an assist with Arango making three saves in regulation for the Huskers.

Lakeland (7-2-1) also won its quarterfinal match with a 2-1 victory against No. 7 Valhalla, courtesy of two Del Monte goals, one of which was assisted by Arben Hoxhaj. Lopez (3 saves) and Mathis (1 save) did the job in goal.

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