By KEVIN ROBERTS
Southington boys soccer trailed Conard 1-0 entering the second of two five-minute overtime sessions on Sept. 24 at Conard High School in West Hartford.
Much like the 1-0 overtime loss to Hall on Sept. 20, the Blue Knights had surrendered a goal to the Chieftains in the first overtime. Southington appeared to be headed to a second straight agonizing overtime defeat, then senior captain Joseph Tellerico saved the day and salvaged a 1-1 tie with a miraculous goal.
Southington traveled to Simsbury this past Saturday, but couldn’t keep the momentum from the Conard tie going and and lost 3-0. The Knights saw their record fall to 1-3-1.
Here’s what happened last week:
Tellerico’s miracle shot
SEPT. 24—The Knights trailed the Chieftains 1-0 with the clock winding down in the second five-minute overtime. Tellerico got a free kick from his side of the field, and he made it.
“In the second overtime with a minute left, Joe Tellerico scored from 65 yards out,” coach Dave Yanosy said.
You read that right, Tellerico tied the game on a 65-yard goal. To say the least, Southington players, coaches and fans were ecstatic.
“We got a free kick on our half of the field, it was like on our own 45-yard line,” Yanosy said. “He put it on frame, it kind of sailed and knuckled and tucked in under the bar.”
The goal came on the same side of the field where Conard’s Haroun Dridi scored off of a corner kick with a minute left in the first overtime. There was some wind at Tellerico’s back, and he made his kick count. It was sweet redemption for Tellerico, whose penalty kick with 13 minutes to play in regulation was saved.
“Joe’s our captain, one of our three captains. He does a great job, and I was really happy that he was able to come through for us,” Yanosy said.
Ryan Lunn made nine saves for Southington to help preserve the tie. Yanosy said he’s never seen a goal like Tellerico’s in his 20 years of coaching. Yanosy said he was happy to get a point on the road against a good Conard team that always plays tough at its place.
“Our guys were really excited. This is a really hard-working team, they do a really good job,” Yanosy said. “Hopefully if we can get some of these results under our belt, where we can go into a tough environment and come out with a point or come out with a win, hopefully it bodes well for the season.”
Loss at Simsbury
SEPT. 28—The Knights fell behind 3-0 by halftime in their loss to the Trojans on the turf of Holden Field in Simsbury.
Lunn made six saves for Southington in the loss. Ian Boudreau had to make just one save for the clean sheet for Simsbury. Aidan Wilfinger scored two goals while Dylan Sciallis added a goal for the Trojans, who improved to 3-1-1.
Up next: Southington hosted Avon on Tuesday. The Knights are also home on Friday against Bulkeley at 3:45 p.m. on the turf of Fontana Field.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Kevin Roberts, email him at KRoberts@SouthingtonObserver.com