November 02, 2017
By: Tom Meikrantz
Pen Argyl and Notre Dame Green Pond faced off Tuesday night in the District 2A boys soccer championship with the winner assured of making history. Neither school had won a boys title previously and the Pen Argyl seniors were 0-18 their freshman year. Yet here they were at Palmerston’s football stadium the last two standing in albeit a slimmed down bracket but nonetheless coming in like kids in a candy store excited to be playing for a trophy and in front of the TV sports cameras.
Pen Argyl has two head coaches Nick Pope and Nevin Smith who three years ago took the job on an agreed-upon plan to share the duties while Mike Reilly was in his first year as head coach of the Crusaders. His experience was strictly travel soccer with the Forks Soccer Club, none on the varsity high school level. Last year Notre Dame was a pedestrian 10-8-2 while the Green Knights were 5-12-1. Going into the District final, Notre Dame was 18-4 overall with Pen Argyl 12-5-1 with both teams making impressive improvement over 2016.
As for the game, Notre Dame pretty much dominated winning 3-1 behind Dan Leary’s hat trick. Goalkeeper Alex Ficarra missed out on his 14th shutout on a penalty kick late in the game. It was a fast-paced game with fantastic finishes from the foot of Leary. It turned out to be a District championship worthy of TV coverage. Congratulations on both teams and good luck in states!