BETHLEHEM – Northwestern had won five straight soccer matches against Moravian Academy three of them by shutout.
Thursday afternoon in the first round of the District 11 Class AA playoffs, it was a totally different story. The No. 3 seeded Lions came out roaring and went on to post a 3-0 victory over Northwestern.
It was the first time since October of 2007 that Moravian Academy came out on top in the battle of Colonial League rivals.
"It has been three years since we have had success against them," said Moravian Academy coach Bob Hartman, whose Lions dropped a 1-0 decision to the Tigers earlier this season. "It's a big weight off of these boys' shoulders. They had a lot of internal pressure entering this game, as they really wanted to win."
Moravian Academy will now face Colonial League champion Southern Lehigh on Monday afternoon at the Whitehall High School Sports Complex. The top-seeded Spartans edged Notre Dame of Green Pond, 2-1.
Moravian Academy jumped out to a early lead whenEddie Painter headed the ball past the Tigers' keeper Talon Williams. Alex Schulman was credited with the assist.
It was until 35-seconds into the second half that the Lions struck again as Adam Blair took in a pass from Painter and drilled it home.
"They definitely outplayed us," said Northwestern coach Fernando Carrizo. "I thought the first half we controlled the game.
"That first goal was poor defending on our part. But, then within the first 35-seconds of the second half, our players didn't cleared the ball and they ended up with a score. That's when our heads went down."
Three-minutes and five-seconds later, Painter and Blair hooked up again.
This time, it was Painter scoring his second goal of the game off a Lions' corner. Blair was credited with the assist.
Moravian Academy held a 14-6 edge in shots. Both team recorded seven penalty corners.
Williams finished with nine saves for Northwestern. Logan Bernard ended up with seven saves for the Lions.
"I think it has been a frustrating year for us," said Carrizo. "I know they love the game. And they're always learning the game and taking something from it each time they step out on that field.
"Other than that, I give credit to Moravian Academy. They played hard. And, when you play hard, you win games."