LANGHORNE – In need of a win facing visiting Council Rock South Tuesday night (Sept. 27) at Harry Franks Stadium, Neshaminy got all the help it needed from Dan Grinrod. The senior midfielder tallied a pair of goals in the second half to help push the Redskins to 4-2 triumph over the Suburban One National League (SONL) Golden Hawks.
With CR South trailing 2-0 at the half, the Hawks got a goal back in the first 30 seconds of the second half when senior Reid Czapor popped a ball into the right side corner off a feed from classmate Kevin Bowers.
Ignited by the quick strike in the second half, Czapor’s goal threatened to turn what looked like a would-be runaway for Neshaminy into a horse race.
“They came out stronger looking to get a result in the second half,” said Grinrod. “Two-nothing is the worst score in soccer.
“They came out looking to get the next goal – which they did – and after that, it was a battle, back and forth.”
Grinrod had his own ideas however, taking an attempted clearing pass about 25 yards out and drilling it over the head of second-half CR South keeper Nolan Gaudet less than five minutes into the second half.
“You give the ball away to one of the better players in the league, he’s going to take care of it,” said Hawks coach Bob Francis. “He got us three times tonight.”
Grinrod opened the scoring in the 15th minute, taking a feed from classmate Dylan McDonald and popping it into the back of the net.
“That was a big goal,” said Neshaminy junior Jack McCourt. “”It put us a leg up and kind of set the tone for the match.”
McCourt is perhaps the most dangerous player for the Redskins. A striker for Neshaminy, McCourt came through with an unassisted goal in the 31st minute when CR South keeper Kevin McNamee could not latch onto a through ball he came out of the goal in order to keep it out of harm’s way. Instead, the ball popped loose, leaving McCourt with an open net.
While Francis liked the way his team neutralized McCourt the remainder of the night, the assistant coach admitted the Hawks lost track of Grinrod in this one.
“He’s a crafty player and he was able to find spaces either behind our central midfielders or in front of them,” said Francis. “At times, that gave him enough room to distribute the ball and where he was able to score the goals, we were just a little too far off and he was able to take advantage of it.
“It’s one of those things where you can take care of one of them and if you don’t care of the other one, they can get you.
“We did a good job tonight on Jack. He still had his opportunities – he was dangerous with the ball running forward. He always is. But Grinrod really had the touch tonight.”
As a team, Neshaminy certainly had the better of the play in the first half, outshooting the Hawks 9-4before the break. To its credit, CR South rebounded with its play after the intermission. That much was shown on the stat sheet with the second half shots even at 5-5 and well as the goals at 2-2.
“We just gave it a little extra push,” said Francis. “I told the guys at the half that the game’s not over. They scored two in the first half. There’s no reason why we couldn’t go out and score two in the second half.”
Unfortunately for the Hawks, they surrendered as many goals as they scored in the second half.
One of those strikes for CR South came off the foot of junior forward Pat Wilcynski, who took a timely cross from senior Justin Weinberg and top-shelfed it in the 66th minute.
Eleven minutes later, Grinrod was at it again, scoring another unassisted goal on a corner kick from the right side that bounced in off the keeper. Both second-half goals by Grinrod restored a two-gal cushion for the Skins and gave them some much-needed breathing room.
“That was definitely something that we were trying to do,” said Grinrod. “It was really critical to get those goals back and it was something that needed to be done – without a doubt.”
For Neshaminy, the win keeps the Skins tied with Abington in the SOL National conference standings with both teams tied for third place at four wins apiece. Unbeaten Pennsbury and CR North sit atop the division with five wins each.
“This win was huge,” said McCourt. “It sets us up to contend to win the league and make a run.”
The Golden Hawks, meanwhile, look to regroup. CR South is 3-6-2 overall, 1-4-1 in the SONL after dropping this one, drawing even with Bensalem and losing 3-1 to Pennsbury.
Contact Steve Sherman at ssherman@21st-Centurymedia.com or @BucksLocalSport on Twitter
Neshaminy 4, Council Rock South 2
(Sept. 27 at Neshaminy)
NESHAMINY 2 2 – 4
CR SOUTH 0 2 – 2
FIRST-HALF GOALS: N — Dan Grinrod, from Dylan McDonald 15th minute, Jack McCourt, unassisted 31st minute; CRS — none.
SECOND- HALF GOALS: CRS — Reid Czapor, from Kevin Bowers, 41st minute, Pat Wilcynski, from Justin Weinberg, 66th minute; N — Grinrod, unassisted, 45th minute, Grinrod, unassisted, 77th minute.
SHOTS-ON-GOAL: N — 14; CRS — 9.
SAVES: N — 9; CRS — 13.