By Jay Mwamba
Surprise package New York Rovers produced another emphatic performance in the CSL top flight last Sunday, demolishing Clarkstown Eagles 8-1 on Randalls Island to extend their hundred percent record into Week Five.
The East leaders [formerly known as modest Barnstonworth Rovers], took no prisoners against their upstate visitors. Alex Weekes and Nick Christman both notched a hat trick while Christian Carrasquillo scored twice.
Rovers [5-0, 15] stayed five points clear of former champs New York Athletic Club who stunned New York Greek Americans 1-0.
Earlier, Rovers’ reserves had set the tempo in the opener, with Oscar Cantu, Retta Mulugetta and first team player-coach Andy Abramovits on target in a 3-0 win.
In the West, pace-setters Pancyprian Freedoms also improved to 5-0 , but only after rallying back against United FC at St. John’s University.
In the first of their two meetings in six days, Pancyprian erased a two-goal deficit to edge United 3-2. The two sides clash again Thursday night in the US Amateur Cup at Aviator Sports Complex.
Pancyprian’s unblemished record going into the match seemed in danger when Moe Mashriqi and Paul Nittoli gave United a first half lead.
“[They] went up 2-0 at the half although we had the better of the play. They made their chances and we did not,” said George Halkidis. “In the second half we came out strong.”
Quick goals by Yannick Reyering [47th] and Michael Palacio [49th] turned it around. “We had the better of the play and missed a couple of breakaways that could have had the score line look much higher,” said Halkidis.
At any rate, Reyering’s second [63rd] clinched full points while opening up a six-point lead over the vanquished Greek Americans.
At the Metropolitan Oval, three former Greek American players returned to haunt their old side.
The Greeks succumbed 1-0 to a goal scored by ex-NYGA Bobby Linaberry in former Greek skipper Joe Ruesgen’s first encounter against his old mates as NYAC coach. Nat Bekoe, was the other erstwhile Greek in the NYAC squad.
“One of those days,” lamented Greek coach Stavros Zomopoulos. “We dominated 89 minutes of play but the ball would not go in for us.”
Admitting that it hurt to lose to “our boys,” he vowed payback.
The Greek reserves ended NYAC’s hundred percent record with a goalless tie.
CSL titlists Lansdowne Bhoys bounced back from a 2-1 loss to Rovers the previous week to thrash Central Park Rangers 4-0 at Tibbetts Brook Park.
Overlapping fullbacks Joseph Agoo [25th] and Karim Russell [40th] hit pay dirt with first half goals assisted by Gareth McGlynn and Stephen Roche, respectively. Papa Thioune [70th] and Daryl Kavanagh [80th] killed off CPR on resumption.
Conor Hunter scored a penalty in the reserves’ 1-1 draw.
Hitherto winless Manhattan Celtic finally came good with a 5-0 drubbing of Hoboken FC at Pier 5 in Brooklyn. Captain Adam Mitchinson, Joe Cooper [two], Jon Juchno and Austin McCann tallied.
“It’s a great feeling knowing we executed everything well,” said Celtic’s 23 year-old coach Matt Kane. “Overall, probably the worst second half of soccer in years,” remarked Hoboken’s Bill Marth.
Their reserves drew 1-1 after Hoboken’s Greg Pilla [45th] had canceled out Colin Hutzler goal [29th].
Also in the CSL First Division, Mettin Copier and Dritan Sela were the Stal Mielec heroes in Boonton, N.J., where the Poles blanked hosts New York Croatia 2-0.
Unbeaten Doxa [3-0-2, 11] edged New Amsterdam United 1-0 on James Zaidan’s strike at Laurel Park to remain a point ahead of Shamrock on the Division Two table.
Ahmed Yansaneh, Akay Nuredini and Foti Bouklis were on target in the Doxa reserves’ 3-0 triumph.
Shamrock, meanwhile, outgunned Manhattan Kickers 4-3 at St. Michael’s Playground in Flushing despite a hat trick from the latter’s Mohamed Abdelwahab.
Abdelwahab pegged back Nikle Guzijan’s bullet header [10th] and then scored again [15th pen.] to put Kickers ahead. However, Sean Doran, skipper Sean Steed and Man of the Match Santiago Rigby hit back before the interval to make it 4-2.
Abdelwahab completed his trey early in the second half but the Irishmen [3-1-1, 10] held on for the win.
Kickers ‘B’ were blown out 9-0 with Sean Hand [three], Leandro Fregossi [two], Jim Wong [two, Paul McDaid and Anthony Carrabotta the Shamrock marksmen.
Champions CD Iberia remain winless in the second tier following their latest loss, a 1-0 decision to New York Ukrainians, whose Joseth Betras scored [20th] at McCarren Park.
“Very hard game,” conceded Ukrainian coach Steve Kovalenko.
His reserves had a goal from Kevin Young in a 2-1 defeat.
Rookie side New York Supreme made it two wins in a row with a 7-1 shellacking of FC Japan on Randalls Island.
Amanfo Assibu [two], Mohammed Bagaru, Maxwell Barfoe [two], Bobby Akumah and Jeff Asare tallied. Their reserves won 3-1.
In a reserve encounter at Evander Childs High School, Sporting Astoria dropped a 2-1 decision to NYPD FC.
Astoria missed a penalty then fell a goal behind. Johan Clarke leveled but the hosts conceded a free kick from which the Cops bagged the winner.
“Tough loss,” Ed Romero rued the missed penalty. “After scoring 17 goals in our first four games we were held to just one. The size and physical presence of the NYPD reserve team had a lot to do with it. These kids were not ready for such physicality.”
FC Gwardia saw off NYC Vllaznia 6-0 at Corporal Thompson Park. And with New York Ittihad crashing 3-2 to Lansdowne Bhoys, the rout elevated the Poles into first place in Metro Div. One West.
Konrad Sobotka [three], Marcin Januszko [two] and Bartlomiej Stolarczyk gunned down Vllaznia.
Gwardia had Lansdowne’s Johnny McGeeney to thank for his hat trick in the Irishmen’s 3-2 win at Tibbetts Brook Park that helped knock Ittihad off the top.
According to coach Marty Griffin, McGeeney’s first was a powerful header from a Damien Mescall corner. His second was another header before he closed the show with a left footer set up by Mark Finn.
Basir Mashriqi, Karimullah Mashriqi and Nasir Mashriqi tallied for Brishna in a 3-all tie with Mr. Dennehy’s on Staten Island.
Timur Mone converted a stoppage time penalty to rescue CPR Reds in a 1-1 draw with Gotham Argo on Randalls Island.
Gotham had led from the first half when Nico Eceizabarrena’s effort was deflected into the net.
The result ended the Reds’ hundred percent record but following Vllaznia’s capitulation against Gwardia, the Reds [4-0-1, 13] moved six points clear of their closest rivals.
Catalin Ionita’s late equalizer [70th] earned Ridgewood a 1-1 tie with Gotham FC at Bushwick Inlet.
“An underwhelming performance by our team,” rued assistant coach Ovidiu Ordean.
Also in Metro Div. One, the prolific Jo Valentin had misfiring Missile FC’s lone response in a 4-1 bashing by Dynamo SC.
Complacent NYC Metro Stars held off Grenadier Zenith 3-2 in a Metro Two fixture at Red Hook after nearly coughing up a three-goal lead.
John Guengueng [two] and Othman Lantir had the points firmly in the bag when, in coach Edison Calle’s own words, “we complicated [things] for ourselves in the last ten minutes and they scored twice.”
Metro Stars [4-0-1, 13] lead FC Spring Valley Huerto United by a point on the table.
Third place Mola SC are just three points off the pace with a game in hand after pipping AO Brooklyn 3-2 at Abraham Lincoln High School, courtesy of Vito Coldonato [two] and Kanijah Lucien.
Williamsburg International, the scorer of 30 goals in their first three games this fall, have now lost two straight. A 5-2 slump to NY Bravehearts at Bushwick Inlet is their latest defeat.
Andreas Moudatsos got the WIFC goals, bringing his tally to ten for the calendar year – or an average of one per game.
Jonathan Jacob, Diego Soto, Diego Mayanga and Oumar Maybe [two] did the damage for Bravehearts.
Joaquín Lynch starred with four goals in Barnstonworth Rovers’ 7-3 trouncing of SC Eintracht on Randalls Island. Matt Donovan [two] and Jorge Español accounted for the others.
Jason Yim and Artur Galstian [two] replied for Eintracht.
Elsewhere in Metro Div. Two, Anis Khattate [two] and Ergys Janku [two] lifted NYFC Iilira past Metro City Fury Athletic 4-2.
In Over-30 action, Shamrock preserved their perfect record with a 1-0 defeat of CPR Grays in a top-of-the-table clash on Randalls Island.
Alex Berne [70th] struck the winner for the Div. One leaders [4-0, 12].
Sister teams Manhattan Kickers Over-30 and Manhattan Kickers Premier left East River Park with a point apiece from a 2-2 draw.
The Over-30s’ David James Stewart leveled with a late header after Nick Bill had canceled out Bryan Picariello’s go-ahead goal and then put Premier, the Div. One champs, ahead.
“I guess a tie was a fair result against the reigning champs, but I’m [peeved] we gave up the chance to take all three points,” fumed Eddie Yee Woo Guo.
Barnstonworth Premier also tied 2-2 with CPR Old Boys. Nedgy Nazon and Mike Butler scored.
Kiriakos Mallias [three], Dimitis Theodoropoulos and Panagiotis Spinos scripted a 5-2 Greek Over-30 result over BW Gottschee.
In another Over-30 Div. One fixture, Manhattan Celtic Legends beat Mega Alexandros 3-1, thanks to Souleymane Diallo [two] and Addison Quale.
His CPR Legends may have prevailed 6-0, but according to Manohar Venkataraman it was no walk in the park against old foes Hoboken FC Veterans.
“Hoboken always provides CPR with a tough physical game and this one was no exception, regardless of the final score,” he said. “It took the best passing of the season from the new squad gelling together to break Hoboken down.”
When the proverbial dust had settled on Randalls Island, Willian D’Andrea had a hat trick and two assists; Chris Williams and Tom Pattinson each had a goal and two assists, while John Hodges had struck with the last kick of the game.
Eintracht were the other winners in the Over-35. Goals by Andres Garcia [two] and Vinny Vasconcelos dispatched Barnstonworth 3-1.