CLAYMONT – Newark Charter tried to put a damper on Archmere’s senior day, scoring three minutes into their boys soccer match Oct. 29 in Claymont. But the Auks took control of the game as the first half progressed and pulled away for the 4-1 victory. The win secured the Diamond State Athletic Conference championship and with it an automatic bid to the Division II state tournament for the Auks.
The game, played on the grass field in front of the Patio, began under cloud cover and in a steady rain. That didn’t bother the Patriots, who took the early lead when Adejoyinolu Ojo beat Auks keeper Christian Parker. Archmere then went to work on offense.
In the space of three minutes, the Auks sent one shot off the side of the Patriots’ net, blasted a free kick wide and saw a crossing pass roll through the crease and out of play. They nearly scored on a corner kick and kept the pressure on. That would pay off in the 12th minute when Sam Gattuso played a crossing pass in front and Will Schatzman was able to corral a loose ball and unload a laser to the lower left corner of the net.
The Auks earned several corner kicks through the balance of the first half but were unable to convert. Schatzman was robbed by Patriots keeper Nicholas Parks in the 21st minute, and Parks turned away a deflection off a long free kick. Newark Charter’s best opportunity went over the Auks’ net a few minutes before halftime.
Another Archmere corner nearly paid dividends, but the ball was headed off the crossbar and out of the crease. The Auks took the lead in the 55th on a well-designed set piece. Andrew Rosenbaum sent a free kick from the right side of the 18-yard box high into the air through the crease, where Gavin Fanning was stationed. He headed the ball to the center of the box, and Schatzman used his height to rise above the defense and knock a header past Parks.
Brian Neill scored an insurance goal in the 67th minute, and Fanning tallied the final goal a few minutes later.
The Auks had 14 shots to the Patriots’ five, and they earned 11 penalty corners to two for Newark Charter. The Auks improved to 13-1 and conclude the regular season at home on Wednesday when Salesianum visits. That game will be played on one of the school’s turf fields beginning at 3:45 p.m.
The Patriots ended their season with a record of 5-8-2.