West Chester United kicked off the new Northeast Super League competition with a 3-2 win over Jackson Lions FC at home on Saturday night.
Pressure from Drexel forward Chris Donovan set up the opening goal when he was able to force a turnover deep and set up Saint Joseph’s University alum Leon Maric for a goal past former Bethlehem Steel FC keeper Matt Perrella.
Donovan’s high pressure paid dividends again just before halftime when he dispossessed Perrella and chipped in a goal to make it 2-0 going into the break.
It was pressure again that produced the third goal in the 53rd minute when Andreas Bartosinski picked off a pass played out of the corner and combined with Levi Maruca, Conor Bradley and Troy Amspacher for the goal. Collin Muller helped set up the chance with his pressure and a strong run that forced the deep throw-in.
With the Predators fully in control of the match, Jackson got a glimmer of hope in the 61st minute when Penn goalkeeper Dane Jacomen, who replaced AJ Marcucci to start the second half, let a ball he came out to collect slip under him and Walter Calderon made him pay for the mistake.
Calderon nearly made it 3-2 five minutes later when he was played in behind the defense by David Nigro but his chip hit the crossbar and stayed out. The former NYRB II attacker did get another chance to bring the Lions within one when Walter Barreto lofted a ball to him in the box and he danced through the defense for the finish past Jacomen in the 75th minute.
The Lions carried the momentum from getting back into the game in the final 15 minutes as they searched for an equalizer. Barreto set up Calderon in the box again with time running out but he was whistled offside, Nick Sample had a chance in the box blocked and Nigro had a chance knocked out for a corner by a West Chester defense that was able to hold on for the 3-2 win.
Play in the Northeast Super League will resume on October 3 with FC Motown hosting Safira FC and Vereinigung Erzgebirge hosting Christos FC.
Leon Maric (Chris Donovan) 18’, Donovan (unassisted) 43’, Troy Amspacher (Conor Bradley, Levi Maruca) 53’, Walter Calderon (unassisted) 61’, Walter Calderon (Walter Barreto) 75’
West Chester United: AJ Marcucci, Dwayne Hickerson, Shane Bradley, Amit Bhogul, Levi Maruca, Andreas Bartosinski, Sam Brown, Conor Bradley, Troy Amspacher, Chris Donovan, Leon Maric
Substitutes: Joey Baghdia, Dane Jacomen, Collin Muller, Spencer Burkhardt, Vito Vincent, Chas Wilson, Anthony Rovito
Jackson Lions: Matt Perrella, Kevin Simek, Matthew Jeffery, Adrian Barajas, Bryant Avalos, Dan Pizzimenti, Jacob Rubinstein, Walter Calderon, Nick Costelloe, Jacques Francois, Dave Nigro
Substitutes: Nick Sample, Walter Barreto, Derick Carpio, James McCombs