Bears blank PME
ron gower/times news Ricardo Garcia (12) of Pleasant Valley battles for control of the ball with a PM East defender Pocono Mountain East
Pleasant Valley and Pocono Mountain East played 110 minutes of scoreless boys soccer Saturday afternoon. The stalement ended with all five of the Bears making their shots in the penalty kicks, while one PM player missed.
The result was a 1-0 win by the Bears in District 11 AAA competition. The local squad next travels to Emmaus Tuesday night in a game against Parkland. The contest starts at 7:30.
Making the penalty kicks for PV were Connor Phillips, Cole Bernier, Hako Beskovic, Justin Habick, and Noah Fulcomer.
In the penalty kicks, the first four Pocono Mountain players made theirs count. With Pleasant Valley leading 5-4 in the kicks, the East's Barth Christian, a sophomore, missed the net on the left side by mere inches to give PV the victory.
For PV, the win set a school record for the 14th shutout of the season.
The Bears now have a 19-1 record while Pocono Mountain finished the season at 10-9-2.
When the two teams met earlier this season, Pleasant Valley, seeded third in the district, beat PME, 1-0, in an overtime game.
It looked like it would be dejavu for the Bears on Saturday. At the start of the first overtime, PV quickly took the ball to Pocono Mountain's goal and Bernier took a short shot that was blocked. Phillips took the ricochet and it looked like he would get it in the net, but the goalie was able to stop it.
PV didn't get a shot on goal the rest of that overtime period.
Even in the second overtime, Pocono Mountain maintained control of the ball for a good part of the period.
The best showing by Pleasant Valley, besides storming out in that first overtime, was in the second half of regulation when they controlled the ball on PM's half of the field for nearly 30 minutes.
Coach Chris Pachuta remarked, "East is a very good team. It was pretty even both ways. East has a ton of talent."
The game was played in gusty conditions and Pachuta commented, "The wind didn't help either team."
He praised Habick and Phillips "who played really hard" and Brandon Percy "who did a good job in back."
Pocono Mountain's coach Robert Black said, "It's a tough way to lose. I thought it was an evenly fought game."
Pointing to Pleasant Valley's record, Black said, "I thought it took a lot of character on our part, especially against a team of that calibre."
He couldn't single any players out, stating, "I thought it was a team effort."
Pocono Mountain had 12 shots on goal while Pleasant Valley had 11.
Bernier had four of those PV shots.
The Bears had 12 saves while East had 11.
There were seven corner kicks for Pocono Mountain and four for PV.