Soccer playoffs: Jordan advances; ECH, Northern fall in 4-A
A speedy Jordan team that dominated in every statistical category blew past an overmatched West Johnston 5-0 Wednesday in the first round of the state soccer playoffs.
“Look man, we’re on fire right now and we’re a tough team to beat,” said Jordan senior forward Sam Pugh.
As for Wednesday’s romp?
“It’s not going to be that easy for the rest of the way,” Pugh acknowledged.
East Region 4-A No. 5 seed Jordan (15-2-3) will host a second round game — tentatively set for 6 p.m. — Saturday at Jordan. The Falcons will play the winner of a first-round game between No. 12 Wake Forest Heritage (16-6-1) and No. 21 Wendell East Wake (7-8-2).
Also eliminated was No. 16 seed East Chapel Hill (8-7-3) which lost at home to No. 17 Fuquay Varina (13-7-3) 3-1 on Wednesday.
In other 4-A first-round action involving area teams Wednesday night, No. 11 Wilmington Laney (15-4-2) downed visiting No. 22 Northern Durham (7-10-1) 3-2 to eliminate the Knights.
On Wednesday, the Maytag repairman was the only guy lonelier than Jordan goalkeeper William Morgenlander, who had little action in the net and two saves. He didn’t even field a ball until 26:53 in the first period, and that was a slow, dying roller from midfield.
“We try as best we can to dominate the possession, and I felt like we were able to do that,” said Jordan coach Don Jones. “It made it hard on them to generate a consistent attack. I felt like we did a good job of when we did lose possession winning it back pretty quickly and then working the ball around.”
Conversely, Jordan took 24 shots, 11 of them on goal, and had nine corner kicks, compared to a pair of shots on goal and no corner kicks for the Wildcats.
Jordan’s scoring parade began with an unexpected twist. West Johnston goalie Luis Ceballos deflected a Jordan kick, but it caromed off a Wildcat teammate and into the net for an own-goal to put the Falcons up 1-0 at 33:19.
After that four Jordan players took turns scoring: Junior forward Huntley Munn off an assist from senior forward Kaushik Puranam at 21:14, and Puranam off an assist from Munn at 18:27 in the first half, with senior middie Danny Potts scoring unassisted at 35:31, and Pugh’s unassisted goal at 21:10 in the second half.
“We haven’t had a guy all year who has been the focal point of our attack, and we’ve had some trouble this year in finishing,” Jones said.
“At various points we’ve had different people step up, which is good in the sense that we’ve gotten a lot of guys who have stepped up over the course of the season,” he said. “On the flip side, we don’t have that go-to guy, but what’s nice is we’re starting to see a few guys compete for that reputation.”
Pugh slammed in his goal from in front of the net.
“I got a good pass from my teammate, (junior forward) Christian Aguilera, and I just turned with the ball and got a good hit on it,” Pugh said. “It hit the post, but luckily it got a good deflection and went in. It was real exciting to put them away.”
Potts, a Red Sox fan, drilled his goal past a desperately diving Ceballos, the ball hooking viciously down and to the right like a nasty cutter from Boston pitcher Jon Lester.
“We had earned a corner kick and I put it short with one of our center backs, David Yeyeodu, and we did a quick one-two. I took the ball inside and shot it and beat the keeper near post,” Potts said.
“We’re looking good. Everyone’s getting healthy at the right point in time,” Potts said. “We’re getting hot right now. We should be able to go far as long as we play the way we can.”
Jones was pleased with his team’s performance.
“I thought we did a nice job from the beginning tonight getting all our players involved. We moved the ball around well. They had a tough time dealing with our speed,” he said.
The game got animated with 16:42 remaining in the second half. Wildcat Austin Stewart, who had a couple of rough collisions with Falcons players who futilely looked for penalties that were not awarded, lost his composure and issued a single-finger gesture to the hooting Jordan student section. He was promptly ejected from the game.
School officials then admonished the Jordan students to refrain from hurling personal insults at the visiting players.
1-A/2-A/3-A playoff roundup
Chapel Hill, Northwood, NCSSM, Carrboro, Woods Charter, Granville Central advance
FROM STAFF REPORTS
Nate Hebert scored three times and Chandler Weedon and Jacob Owens each added a goal Wednesday night as No. 1 seed Chapel Hill won its first-round state 3-A playoff opener 5-0 over No. 32 seed Cameron Union Pines.
Ben Fisher assisted on two of the Chapel Hill goals and John Walden and Daniel Ferreira each had an assist as well. Justus Heizer made one save to post the shutout in goal.
Chapel Hill (22-1-1) outshot Union Pines (7-12-3) 36-1 and advances to a likely Saturday night home date for a second-round game against Big Eight 3-A Conference rival and No. 16 seed Northood (12-7-1).
Northwood downed No. 17 seed Gray’s Creek (12-9-1) 5-2 in Pittsboro Wednesday.
The area’s only other 3-A playoff entry, No. 31 seed Orange (9-12-1) lost 5-0 at No. 2 seed Fayetteville Terry Sanford (21-1-1) Wednesday night.
In 2-A action, No. 5 N.C. Science & Math (15-3-2) downed No. 28 Dixon (8-11-3) 3-0 Wednesday and will host No. 12 Croatan (15-5) Saturday.
No. 7 seed Carrboro (14-5-2) kept the 2-A string going with a 1-0 win over visiting No. 26 Bunn (9-10-1) and will host Mid-State 2-A Conference rival Graham (13-2-2) in Saturday’s second round.
In 1-A first-round action Wednesday, No. 5 Woods Charter (15-3) downed No. 12 East Columbus (6-7) at home 6-0 and will travel to No. 4 Whiteville (12-9-1) in the second round.
No. 6 Louisburg (7-9) eliminated No. 11 Voyager (12-9) 6-1.
No. 1 Granville Central improved to 17-3-1 with a 6-0 win over 2-16 Princeton, the No. 16 seed, and will host No. 8 Hobbton (12-5-2) Saturday at 7 p.m.