Boys HS soccer playoffs underway
The ASHSAA Boys soccer playoffs got underway with thrilling games that ended in close wins in both the varsity and J-V divisions on Saturday, April 29, 2017 at Pago Park Soccer Stadium.
In varsity results, it was No. 1 Samoana Sharks 1, No. 8 Kanana Fou Stallions 0; No. 2 SPA Dolphins 3, No. 7 Faga’itua Vikings 2; No. 3 Tafuna Warriors 1, No. 6 Fa’asao- Marist Crusaders 0, and No. 4 Iakina will play No. 5 Leone Lions on Monday, May 1.
J-V results saw No. 2 Warriors edge No. 3 Lions 1-0, while No. 4 Faga’itua was awarded a win by forfeit over No. 5 Crusaders. No. 1 Samoana sat out the first round of the J-V playoffs, and will play on Monday, May 1 against Faga’itua.
All eight teams in the varsity division made the playoffs, as well as all five teams in the J-V competition.
DOLPHINS 3, VIKINGS 2
Faga’itua scored first, but it was the defending champions that scored last to win the game thanks to a goal from Joshua Tabui with five minutes to spare in the game.
The Vikings scored three minutes into the match when Raemos Fano beat his defender at the edge of the box, and slotted the ball past SPA’s goalie.
Harvey Manu equalized for the Dolphins late in the first half, and both teams went into the break tied, 1-1.
In the second period, Faga’itua went one up on the Dolphins with Alex Paletaleo scoring on a rebound off of a blocked shot. Again, Manu equalized on a direct free kick from the edge of the box that just went over the hands of Faga’itua’s goalie, and into the back of the net.
Tabui then scored the game-winner on a rolling shot that crawled into the far post with five minutes left in the game.
SHARKS 1, STALLIONS 0
Samoana dominated possession of the ball, and played most of both halves deep inside Kanana Fou territory. However, they only had one goal from all of their troubles inside Stallions real estate, thanks to a goal from Elliot Lelei.
Lelei blasted a shot from inside the penalty area that the goalie had no chance of stopping early in the first half. But they also had several one-v-one opportunities against Kanana Fou, only to have the goalie stop each shot.
Kanana Fou could have tied it with less than 10 minutes to play, and with the goal mouth wide open, but their striker just could not get to the ball in time to knock it in for the equalizer.
WARRIORS 1, CRUSADERS 0
Kennedy Taimalie scored the game’s only goal in the first half for Tafuna, enough to put them through to the semi-finals despite dominating ball and territorial possession.
The Crusaders threatened a few times in the match, and turned it up in the last five minutes but it was still not enough to score the equalizing goal.
The Warriors were constantly on the attack, and at times had the ball inside Fa’asao- Marist’s six-yard box, but they could never complete their goal scoring attacks.
WARRIORS 1, LIONS 0
It was a game that could have gone either way with none of the two teams dominating the possession and territorial dispute last Saturday.
Tafuna’s New Year Villar finally broke the scoreless tie in the second half, but Leone had ample chances themselves to score, but just could not finish it off.
In the other J-V game, the Faga’itua Vikings were awarded the win by forfeit because the Crusaders did not have enough players to start the match.
Both divisions are expected to end by Thursday, May 4, 2017.