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South Jersey Soccer:
Barons Clinch Playoff Berth

Wednesday, July 7, 2004

By John Thompson
South Jersey Barons Correspondent

The South Jersey Barons and the Reading Rage went at each other hammer and tong in an effort to get three valuable points to put towards there play off pushes. However just like the first meeting between these two teams both sides had to be content with just the one point.

The good news for Barons fans is that the rivalry will be renewed once again this season as the Barons get one more shot at the Rage Saturday July 17th at Winslow High School.

Despite the 0-0 score line this was one of the most exciting games of the season so far. Both teams created numerous chances as the game swung from end to end.

The Barons had the better of the chances though and should have been 1-0 up after 33 minutes when Dorley Wilson rounded the keeper only for a defender to come rushing back to block his shot on the line. Tony Donatelli then had a chance to score from the rebound but his effort was blocked by a pile of Reading bodies.

Both defenses stood firm the whole game allowing only long range shots and to defend free kicks with neither troubling Hannigan and Graham in the goals.

Pat Hannigan now has 5 clean sheets in 8 games and a 0.321 goals against average for the season and the Barons defence is second in the nation in goals against having allowed 11 in 15 games.

Both teams will be even more determined to get a result in the next meeting between the two sides. The Barons only need 2 points to clinch the Division title whilst Reading will be doing there best to break the Barons unbeaten run.

Bad news for the Barons is that Neil Holloway will be suspended for the next game after accumulating one to many yellow cards and Ruben Mingo will be suspended for the next game after being sent off against Reading.

Justin Saddler will be out for the rest of the season after partially tearing his ACL in the game against Cape Cod last week he will find out this week if he requires surgery. The Barons did get some good news this week as Chris Williams will return to action having missed the Reading game.

The Barons will be looking for a win at Harrisburg on Saturday night to clinch the Division title having secured a play-off spot already thanks to the Rhode Island Stingrays who beat third placed team Cape Cod on Wednesday night.

The Barons final home game of the season will be on Saturday July 17th at Winslow High School, NJ. Kick off is at 5.30pm.

©2004 South Jersey Sports Online Inc.