Ryan Salocks saw the keeper out of position. He controlled the ball and sent a perfectly placed shot toward the upper left part of the net. The Malden Catholic goalie, Kyle Lewis, sprinted back and reached up for the ball, but to no avail. Salocks scored and gave the Ponders a 1-0 lead with 26 minutes left in the game.
When Salocks found the net, the boisterous and devoted crowd went wild. While the players swarmed around Salocks, vuvuzelas sounded and the fans erupted and cheered.
Following Salocks’ pivotal goal, the Ponders played with even more focus and determination. Rather than stalling, AHS continued to attack Lewis.
The Ponders’ incessant push for a second goal was rewarded 15 minutes later when Fernando Cuervo-Torello sent a laser beam past Lewis. With the insurance goal, the Ponders doubled their lead and were able to hang on for a 2-0 shutout over the Lancers.
Cuervo-Torello’s goal was his second in as many games. His hustle and skill around the ball has been instrumental to Arlington’s success.
After a relatively even first half, the Ponders played more consistent soccer down the stretch, maintaining ball possession the majority of the time in order to preserve their lead. Arlington counteracted everything the Lancers wanted to do offensively and passed the ball with precision.
While the offensive production was superb in the second half, the defense was extremely solid throughout the entire contest. Christian Fischer, Adam Long, Chris Hamblin, and Graham McInnis definitively shut down the speedy Nick Annesse and the rest of the Lancers.
AHS goalie Sam Flavin was relatively inactive in net because the defense was so strong. With that said, Flavin fulfilled his duty when he was challenged.
Following this clutch win, the Ponders will take on undefeated Winchester in the semi-finals of the Division Two North sectional playoffs, as their incredible playoff run continues.