It was time that the Orange men’s soccer team found its scoring punch after a frustrating month. The Panthers struck early on Monday night for its first Central Carolina Conference win of the season against Person.
Daniel Romero scored his first goal of the season in the fifth minute, which turned out to be the game-winner, as Orange defeated the Rockets 4-1 at Orange Soccer Park. Sophomore Dallas Johnson added his first tally of the season on a penalty kick in the 11th minute for insurance.
Orange won for the first time since its season opener at Durham School of the Arts on August 17 in the Bull City. Romero lead the Panthers with five shots. The Panthers (2-5-1, 1-2 in the Central Carolina Conference), fired 17 shots against Person goalkeeper Jared Viveros, who was under constant siege in the second half. Orange had eleven corner kicks.
“I think we were watching each other a little bit more,” said Orange coach Palmer Bowman. “I think we needed to follow up things a little bit more and put in a little more effort to make sure that effort was rewarded.”
After Person netted a goal to reduce Orange’s lead to 2-1, the Panthers’ Angel Chavez knotted an equalizer in the 34th minute. In the second half, the Panthers had a litany of crosses that yielded plenty of chances but not enough scoring. Finally, Emmanuel Mil Cruz scored on the closing goal on a header in the 55th minute. Mil Cruz now leads Orange with three goals this season.
Angel Arroyo-Cruz, Yore Tapia-Mendez and Romero also had assists for the Panthers.
“I think Dallas Johnson, Yurem Tapia-Mendez played pretty well,” Bowman said. “Those are some younger guys who are really stepping up and taking leadership roles.”
Finn Kelly earned the win as Orange goalkeeper. Backup Eben Petrifies replaced Kelly in net late in the game. Kelly earned his second win of the season.
Orange will travel to Hanford Stadium to face Southern Alamance in Graham on Wednesday.
“I want to be more focused and consistent,” Bowman said about the rest of the regular season. “I want to be more focused going into everything and maintain that focus throughout. If we do that, I think we’ll be OK. But we haven’t done that and here we are.”
Cedar Ridge 3, Eastern Alamance 1: The Cedar Ridge men’s soccer team not only grabbed a road win on Monday night. They set up potentially the biggest soccer match at Red Wolves Stadium in years this Wednesday night.
For the second straight game, junior co-Captain Dominic McNerney scored the game-winning goal as the Red Wolves defeated Eastern Alamance at the John Kirby Sports Complex in Mebane. Senior co-Captain Illah Babchenko assisted on two goals as the Red Wolves improved to 7-1-2, 3-0-1 in the CCC.
Cedar Ridge is now in sole possession of second place in the conference. The only team ahead of them is Western Alamance. On Wednesday night, the Warriors will visit Red Wolves Stadium with first place on the line.
Jonam Juarez scored his second goal in as many games, assisted by Gael Arturo Nunez. Solomon Hernandez finished the scoring with an insurance tally in the second half.
Cedar Ridge goalkeeper Eric Galunas finished with six saves to earn his seventh win of the season.
Cedar Ridge has won in its last three trips to Eastern Alamance.
The Red Wolves last winning season came in 2016, when they finished 10-6-4. Since then, they haven’t had more than eight wins in a regular season.
After the matchup against Western Alamance on Wednesday, the Red Wolves will travel to Burlington to face Walter Williams next Monday.
Cedar Ridge is 4-1-2 on the road this year. Its only road loss came against East Chapel Hill two weeks ago.