Neshaminy reaps huge gains with win at Council Rock North (VIDEO)

NEWTOWN – If it was to have any hope of making it into the postseason, Neshaminy just had to have a win when it came into Council Rock North.

It was almost destiny. Less than 30 seconds into the contest, the Skins were awarded a penalty kick when junior striker Dylan McDonald was pulled down by a defender just inside the box.

McDonald made no mistake, putting the ball into the left side corner for the winning goal. Less than halfway through the first half, classmate Dan Grinrod registered that all important insurance goal and Neshaminy was on its way to a 2-0 upset over the Indians, who started the day – Tuesday, Oct. 13 – tied for first place in the Suburban One League (SOL) National Conference.

“This is huge for us,” said Neshaminy head coach Tom Foley. “We’re fighting to get into the playoffs. They are in the top ten so this win will shoot us up five or six slots.”

Fifteen minutes into this game, Grinrod, took a through ball from senior Justin Tobin, got past CR North keeper Billy Storm and pushed it into the right side corner for a 2-0 early lead that favored the Skins.

“This was a great team effort,” said Grinrod, after the game. “We’ve been waiting for this all year.”

Neshaminy kept the pressure on throughout much of the first half, outshooting Rock 7-3 before the intermission. While Council Rock came to play in the second half, it was a matter of too little too, late. Val Scarsellatto, junior netminder for the Skins, stopped a dozen shots including nine in the second half to record the shutout for the visitors.

It was Grinrod who scored the game’s only goal in a 1-0 win over William Tennent Oct. 8 in Langhorne. The junior midfielder one-timed a through ball from sophomore Mike Mandia midway through the second half, giving Neshaminy just its fourth win of the season.

“We’ve had a couple of games that have been like this but two wins in a row just feels great,” added Grinrod.

Coupled together with the win at Rock North, Grinrod and his teammates feel they are headed in the right direction.

“This was a great win for us; it helps put the momentum on our side,” said Grinrod. “But we know we have to play well the rest of the season to make the playoffs.”

After going unbeaten in the SOL National Conference last year, the Skins entered the season after the departure of 13 senior players from 2014 including midfielders Kenny Herrmann (Bloomsburg), James McCourt and Zach Albarran along with defenders Jamen Rowan and Devlin Metee.

Getting the right combination of players on the field has not been easy, admitted Foley.

“We started off very, very slowly, trying to get the right mix on the field,” the coach said. “Over the last two weeks, we feel like we’ve put some things together.”

“We have some people playing some different positions and now, we’re starting to gel a little bit.”

With the win at Rock North, Neshaminy has won four of its last five, its only setback a 3-2 double overtime loss to Abington. The recent string includes victories over Bensalem (2-1), Truman (4-0), Tennent (1-0) and now North.

The Indians fall to 6-3-2 in the SOL National Conference, 9-3-2 overall on the season.

Meanwhile, the Skins, at 5-6-1 in the SOL National, 5-7-1, overall, are tied for fifth place in the league.

“We’ve been struggling but this is a big boost for us,” said Foley.

“This is going to go a long way to determine whether we get to the playoffs or not.”

Battles looming large now for Neshaminy include league-leading Pennsbury (7-2-2) Thursday, Oct. 15, Wissahickon Friday, Oct. 16 and Downingtown West on Saturday, Oct. 17.

An opportunity for the Skins to gain more power points?

We’ll just have to wait and see if they take advantage.

Contact the author at, or @BucksLocalSport on Twitter

Neshaminy 2, Council Rock North 0

(Oct. 13 at CR North)

GOALS: Dylan McDonald (N), Dan Grinrod (N)

SHOTS: Neshaminy 12, CR North 12

SAVES: Billy Storm (CRN) 12, Val Scarsellatto (N) 12

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