By Christopher Decker/Cedar Stars FC
The New York Shockers made the trip down the New York State Thruway to take on Cedar Stars FC on a beautiful Saturday evening in Middletown, New York. The two teams faced off in the beginning of the season with CSFC winning 2-1 in their first game of their inaugural season. The CSFC fans came out to Faller Field to see a good game, and they got just that.
Both teams came out quickly as the game kicked off, with each side pressing high up the pitch. It was just under five minutes when Cedar Stars FC jumped on the board with a goal by CSFC striker Gunnar Studenofft. Trevor Lagarde, a Cedar Stars Academy U17 player that is heading to the USYS National Championship next month, provided the assist after Lagarde won a challenge for the ball in the midfield and then split the Shockers defense with a through ball to Studenofft. Studenofft was able to beat the Shockers goalkeeper and tuck the ball in the goal. This was Trevor Lagarde’s first-ever National Premier Soccer League appearance, and he certainly made the most of it very quickly. It was a proud moment for his father, CSFC head coach Jim Lagarde.
The New York Shockers would respond just five minutes later. The Shockers defense played a ball fifty yards up and over the CSFC midfield to Adetayo Adefioye, just wide of the CSFC penalty area. Adefioye was able to connect with Ryan Palmbaum on the six-yard line, who evened things up at 1-1. With a tie score just eleven minutes into the game, the two teams would not see another goal prior to heading to the locker room for halftime.
It was clear from the start of the second half that neither team planned to play for a single point this evening. It was fast-paced and physical match throughout the remainder of the 90 minutes. Each side saw numerous chances, but quality defending and great goalkeeping at both ends of the pitch kept things even. It was in the 70th minute of the match that the fans saw the biggest shakeup of the second half when CSFC midfielder Thomas Stickley received a second yellow card for a poorly timed tackle against the Shockers’ Wisdom Ishaya, with Stickley being sent off. CSFC would finish off the match with only ten men, but that did not slow them down from pushing for three points.
Cedar Stars FC midfielder Sam LaTorre shared his thoughts on the result.
“It was tough going down a man with twenty minutes to go, but the guys played hard, and we finished the night with a point,” LaTorre said.
CSFC head coach Jim Lagarde was clearly disappointed after the match.
“[They are] struggling in the final third. It’s a new team, and we’re trying to figure out the best system, but it’s clear we need to find a way to score more goals. The team worked hard, and we’ll get there.”
The sentiment about CSFC not being able to score more goals did not end with Lagarde.
“We had a couple chances there that we should have scored,” Studenhofft explained. “Hopefully next game we fix those mistakes and we come back strong. We want to win at home. We want to carry this badge on our chest with pride. We want to give the fans, the players, and the coaches something to be proud of.”
It was a fight to the finish, but both teams would have to settle for a single point this evening in Orange County, New York.
Cedar Stars FC will be on the road for the next two weeks, traveling to Connecticut to take on Hartford City FC on Saturday, June 18 and then further east to Massachusetts the following week, Saturday, June 25 to face off against Valeo FC in Newton. The boys in white and green will return to Faller Field in Middletown, NY to take on Hudson Valley rival Kingston Stockade FC on Friday, July 1.
Please email ContactUsHudsonValley@CedarStars.com for more information regarding tickets.
Photo Credit: Christopher Decker/Cedar Stars FC