ROCKVILLE — The Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons defeated the Churchill Bulldogs 2-0 in the third round of the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association’s boys varsity soccer playoffs Friday evening at Thomas S. Wootton High School.
Battling for a place in the regional finals, the Barons took control with a goal early in the first half. As the Bulldogs searched for a way back into the match, the Barons doubled their lead in the second half to secure the victory to progress to the regional final.
“My boys came out hungry, came out disciplined, and they had a will that said ‘we’re not going to lose tonight,” said B-CC head coach Gui Melendez.
The match began as an even encounter between two sides looking to take control of the match with an early breakthrough.
Launching a counter attack, the Barons found the break through when senior forward Justin Anderson latched onto a high pass in the Bulldogs’ box to send in a powerful shot into the upper corner.
“Our plan was when they head in the back we where going to drop off a little bit and once we smelled blood just go for it,” said B-CC senior captain Eli Sturm. “We got the first goal and that gave us more confidence.”
Falling behind, the Bulldogs responded with their own counterattacks.
Churchill senior forward Darius Siahpoosh found open space on the right flank but his effort was blocked by the B-CC defense.
Moments later, Siahpoosh followed up with another effort but Barons junior goalkeeper Bennett Schwartz was well positioned to execute a save.
“I thought we gave it our all, we have nothing to really be upset about and everyone played as well as they could,” said Churchill senior captain Darius Siahpoosh. “They [B-CC] are a great team, they’re in great form, and defend very well.”
After the break, the Bulldogs continued to look for the equalizer.
Churchill junior forward Aria Ahadpour dribbled through the B-CC backline but his shot went over the bar.
While absorbing the Bulldogs’ pressure, the Barons continued to respond with counterattacks.
Schwartz was forced to fend off two Churchill players at the net when a powerful shot forced him to the ground.
The Barons found their second goal with 13 minutes remaining when a rebound found the feet of junior forward Nathan Messer who tapped the ball from close range.
“There’s no dishonor is playing the way we did … there were a few moments where they didn’t execute as well as I would like,” said Churchill coach Arnold Tarzy. “They [B-CC] just simply outplayed us.”
The B-CC Barons will face the Gaithersburg Trojans in the MPSSAA regional finals on Nov. 7 at Richard Montgomery High School in Rockville.
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