Surging Astro Boy Booters Win One, Then Fall in OT

After posting a disappointing 0-3-1 record in its first four matches of the 2015 season, the Pinkerton Academy boys’ soccer team found its footing and began making some hay in tough Division I.

The defending D-1 champions collected the most recent of those three victories on the seacoast Tuesday, Sept. 22 in a 3-0 blanking of the host Dover High Green Wave.

But veteran coach Kerry Boles’ academy guys ran head-first into disappointment and frustration last Saturday, Sept. 26, when they dropped a 2-1 decision to the rival Londonderry High Lancers in double overtime in Mack Plaque play in Derry.

In the shutout of 3-5 Dover, the now 3-5-1 Pinkerton crew received first-half goals from Andrew Brochu (assist to Colin Coutts) and Cole Perry (from Ashim Gurung) to carry a 2-0 advantage to halftime.

Brochu potted a second goal 25 minutes into the second half to get his Astros to the 3-0 final score. Coutts assisted on that tally as well.

PA goalie Hayden Pavao made two stops in the shutout, while his teammates peppered the Dover net with some 14 shots.

“This was a good follow-up performance to Saturday’s (Sept. 19) win over undefeated Salem,” said Boles. “We played well, knocked on the door all afternoon, scored some goals, and our defense was great once again. We are starting to figure some things out and are heading in the right direction.”

But Boles and his boys were fully aware that they faced a monumental challenge in the annual Mack Plaque match against Londonderry on Saturday. And that’s just what they got.

The Astros netted the first goal of the match a mere 1:08 in when Cole Perry was set up by Coutts, but the visiting Lancers (6-1) tied the game on a penalty kick by Max Hastings with 4:31 left in regulation time – following a controversial penalty call in the box in front of the PA net – and Tom Stanley’s clutch play led to the winning goal in the second overtime as the hosts absorbed a tough, 2-1 loss.

Pinkerton goalie Pavao finished with six saves, while Londonderry keeper Tim McEachern made eight stops his contribution to the LHS success.

“We played an outstanding game against a very good opponent today,” said Boles, himself a former Londonderry High School soccer standout. “But, despite playing well enough to win this game, it was taken out of our hands by questionable and suspect calls. We expect that it’s going to be a battle during this weekend, and it’s the reason we have six eyes watching this game. But on the flip side, as I’ve said before, when you don’t put teams away when you have the chance, you leave your fate in someone else’s hands. That’s what happened today. I give Londonderry credit, they are a good team.”