The Southampton boys soccer team got off to a good start in League VII play, albeit in a tight 2-1 victory at Babylon on Thursday, September 11.
Babylon, which in recent years has been one of the weaker teams in the league, appears to have matured this season and could give teams a hard time. It took Southampton 35 minutes to open the scoring, when junior Gianluca Santacruz found junior Jesse Scanlon off a corner kick, which Scanlon headed in to make it 1-0.
Scanlon then gave the Mariners a 2-0 lead 10 minutes into the second half. Sophomore Fabian Elizondo started a counterattack, sending the ball upfield to senior Ale Rojas, who found some space for Scanlon to work in. Scanlon beat a few Babylon defenders and put the ball in the lower left-hand corner for the goal.
The Panthers got on the board 10 minutes later when Mateo Acosta found Brendan McGaley in the box, who buried his goal make it 2-1. With 16 minutes remaining in the game, Southampton senior goalie Garrett Pike, making his first start of the season, made a point-blank save to preserve the victory for the Mariners.
“Right from the first couple of minutes, we knew Babylon was going to be better than they had been,” Southampton head coach Dave Riley said. “They came out hard and I could see they were ready to pounce but it didn’t shake us.”
With two more goals, Scanlon has seven in three games to start the season. Pike made nine saves in his return to the goal. A key stat from last week’s game: Southampton had 13 corner kicks to Babylon’s five.
Southampton, with its last three games being away, will have a true homecoming this Friday night when the Mariners host Mercy at 7 p.m.
The Lady Mariners fell to 0-1 in League VI, 0-3 overall after two losses last week. Southampton was downed, 7-0, at Mercy on September 10 before getting edged 3-2 at Hampton Bays on Friday night.
ON THE SCHEDULE: Boys—Wednesday, 9/17, at Center Moriches; Friday, 9/19, vs. Mercy, 7 p.m.; Monday, 9/22, at Wyandanch, 4:30 p.m. Girls—Tuesday, 9/16, vs. Bayport/Blue Point, 6 p.m.; Thursday, 9/18, vs. Mount Sinai, 4 p.m.; Monday, 9/22, vs. Center Moriches, 4:30 p.m.