Wilson, Tulpehocken to meet for Berks League title

HAMBURG>> For the fourth time in six seasons, Wilson and Tulpehocken will meet to crown the Berks League champion.

Tulpehocken punched its ticket at Tuesday night’s semifinals with a 1-0 win Fleetwood. Wilson followed up with a 2-0 triumph over defending county champ Exeter.

Tulpehocken last won the county crown in 2011, Wilson in 2013. The championship will be played Thursday at 8 p.m., site to be determined. A scoreless match between Tulpy and Fleetwood turned on a call in the box in the 50th minute.

With Tigers goalie Kyle Kierstad lying prone in front of goal and a swarm of players descending on the ball, an obstruction/dangerous play call was made by the official, who then awarded Tulpy an indirect kick from roughly five yards away.

Jaeden Mathis approached the ball, but instead passed off to Vance Gradwell, who converted a one-timer from seven yards out for the game’s only marker. Gradwell’s conversion was Tulpy’s first and only shot on target the entire match — and its success cut against the grain of a match that flowed in Fleetwood’s direction for much of the evening.

“It was a good effort, everybody went out and did what they were supposed to do, understood their roles,” Tulpy coach Tim Frantz said. “We knew coming in that they game (Fleetwood) were a solid team. They’re very well-coached. Their kids are seven, eight deep. We played a very good team game. We knew that we weren’t going to get a lot of opportunities.” Frantz was reluctant to discuss the call that led to the game’s only goal.

Trent Johnson stood tall in net for the Trojans, making several solid stops and rejecting all seven shots he saw.

“He’s played really well this year,” Frantz said of Johnson. “He’s kept us in some ballgames and made that big save that we need.”

In the second semifinal, Wilson got goals from Christian Sload and Ryan Terefenko to fend off a challenge from Exeter and knock out last season’s champs. The Eagles had zero shots on goal in the first half, but were able to increase the pressure effectively during the second 40 minutes, winding up with 10 corners.

But Wilson’s corner set piece defense proved up to the task.

“That’s stuff we go over every day, little details I talk about,” Wilson head coach Moss Grande said. “Details we work on.

“I thought it was an evenly-played match. I thought both teams had opportunities; we’ve seen each other how many years in the semis and it’s come down to who puts it home. The boys showed up. It was fun to be part of it.”

Sload broke the ice with 7:39 left in the first half on a sublime header, coming off a feed from Dan Gallagher. With Exeter ratcheting up the heat, Ryan Terefenko provided much-needed insurance with 15:52 left in regulation, again on a ball from Gallagher. His shot from about 10 yards out cleanly beat Exeter goalie Jose Aparicio.

Goalie Josh Wertz made five high-quality saves for the Bulldogs. It did not go unnoticed.

“I thought it was one of his best games of the year,” Grande said. “He was coming out big on corners, he was talking, finding feet, being a leader in the back that we’ve been asking for. I was really proud of him tonight.”


Game 1

Tulpehocken 1, Fleetwood 0

Tulpehocken –  0  1 — 1

Fleetwood –  0  0 — 0

Second half

T – Vance Gradwell (Jaeden Mathias), 30:53

Shots on goal

T 1, F 7


T 0, F 6


T (Trent Johnson) 7, F (Kyle Kierstad) 0


Game  2

Wilson 2, Exeter 0

Exeter –  0  0 — 0

Wilson – 1  1  — 2

First half

W – Christian Sload (Dan Gallagher), 7:39

Second half

W – Ryan Terefenko (Gallagher), 15:52

Shot on goal

W 7, E 5


W 7, E  10


W (Josh Wertz) 5, E (Jose Aparicio) 5



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