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High School Soccer:
Haddonfield Work Their Way to the Top

Friday, November 11, 2005

By Clark Washington
SJSports Special Correspondent

On paper, the Delran Bears had the slight edge heading into this game. Even with the absence of one of their top scorer on the team, Delran was looking to pick up their third straight sectional title in front of their home crowd. Luckily this game is decided by the players on the field and the coaching staff that puts their players in the right situations. After the second seeded Bulldogs from Haddonfield found themselves trailing in this game, they would begin to match Delran’s intensity and not only tie this game but also take the lead early in the second half. This physically played game swung in Haddonfield’s favor and the Bulldogs would be able to hold off the charging Bears by a 2-1 margin.

The number one seeded Bears went right to work executing the game plan coach Mike Otto had instructed. Winning just about every loose ball early allowed Delran to put themselves in opportunities to get off a good shot at the net. Brian Gordon would be successful giving the Bears the 1-0 lead in the first of with 29:15 on the clock. A short field and a brief scramble in front of the net found the foot of Gordon and he made good on his shot. So far this season, when the Bears score that first goal of the game the defense has been coming up big preserving that lead.

During last year’s attempt to make it to the South Jersey Group II title game, the Bulldogs were knocked out of the tournament during the semifinals. Haddonfield would quickly get themselves back into this game and quickly erase any thoughts of last year’s results. Andrew Tsafas would tie this game about nine minutes later and that goal would be that last one scored in the first half. But the second half was a new beginning for Haddonfield. Joey Riggs was in between several players on a free kick from Britton Wychoff and headed the ball into the net with just over eighteen and a half minutes remaining in the game. The Bulldogs would hold onto that lead for the remainder of the game to pick up the sectional title.

Photos by Art Redd

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