Knights Charge To Shutout Victory

  Knights forward Edwin Licona, left-center, heads a ball on net against Hampton Bays on Monday.   Long Islander News photo/Connor Beach

Knights forward Edwin Licona, left-center, heads a ball on net against Hampton Bays on Monday. Long Islander News photo/Connor Beach

By Connor Beach
cbeach@longislandergroup.com

The Elwood-John Glenn Knights varsity boys soccer team beat Hampton Bays, 4-0, in an early season matchup on Monday.

The match was the second league game for the Knights, who have enjoyed offensive success so far this season. Led by head coach Lou Hanner and assistant coach Chris Reilly, Glenn stuck to the gameplan by applying pressure on the offensive end and backing it up with solid defense.

The Knights scored the first goal early off of a shot by senior forward Edwin Licona, who was able to finish a close range effort. Another senior forward, Christian Velasquez, assisted the goal.

Glenn continued to dominate the first half, adding a second goal to the scoreboard after 13 minutes of play, when Velasquez finished a chance off an assist from sophomore midfielder Carsten Staehlin.

Two minutes later, the Knights struck again. Senior goalkeeper and captain Chris Spalding played the ball up field quickly and accurately to striker pair Licona and Velasquez. They again combined and Velasquez put the ball in the back of the net after a good run of passing.

The first half finished with the Hampton Bays keeper making a good save to deny junior midfielder Adam Astarita a goal.

The second half was defined by a strong defensive performance by the Knights. Junior defender Josh Barzilai made a number of good clearances under pressure and was provided security in the back line. Senior captain and defender Joe Franzese had a powerful presence in the middle of the pitch, winning many balls in the air and pushing forward when given the opportunity.

Glenn scored its fourth goal with one minute remaining, when senior midfielder Thomas Witthuhn scored on a blast from around 18 yards out.

Spalding earned his second clean sheet in league play.

Hanner praised his team’s start to the season; the Knights have scored nine goals in two league games.

“We have had a good start, but we still have a lot of work to do,” Hanner said. “I told the team that we have a couple of tough games coming up away against Wyandanch and a long trip out to Mattituck on Saturday morning.”

The game against Wyandanch occurred after deadline Wednesday. Saturday’s match at Mattituck is scheduled to kick off at 10 a.m.