By Mitch Silver
Before they faced the Pelham High Boys’ Soccer team in the final regular-season game of the fall, Head Coach Jared Small’s Garnets entered Nugent Stadium accompanied by the visitors and players from Rye Youth Soccer’s Under-9 teams, who would play an exhibition game at halftime. It was Senior Night, and 13 Rye upperclassmen were recognized on the evening. The team also wore pink jerseys to honor the fight against cancer, with the single word “Hope” on the back.
When the whistle blew to start the game, Rye’s senior squad got right to work, dominating possession in the Pelham half. Fifteen minutes in, senior midfielder Jack Childs took a perfect corner kick that Jonas van Beurden, playing his 55th game for the Garnets, flicked past the keeper. He scored again three minutes later, when he won the ball in Pelham’s area and scored on a 25-yard kick that flew in under the crossbar.
The Pelicans wouldn’t get a shot on goal until 20 minutes were gone in the half. Senior goalie Kyan Cox saved a ball that banged off the upper corner of the cage, keeping it out. But two more shots from Rye soon went in. Twenty-five minutes in, Childs ran along the left side of the box, passing to junior Kieran Traynor. Traynor’s initial strike hit the crossbar. When it came back to him, he alertly headed it into the goal. Two minutes later, senior striker Tommy Broderick got his head on a long ball. Classmate Henry Field headed it in the box before junior Joseph Chai registered his second goal of the season. The Garnets took a 4-0 lead into halftime.
The scoreboard showed the Garnets had taken 13 shots to two by Pelham, making a single save while the visitors needed eight. Meanwhile, the U9 Bears, Gators, Scorpions, Sharks, and Tigers played three spirited games simultaneously on the field during the break before the varsities re-took the field.
Less than five minutes into the second half, after Henry Field beat a series of opposing players on the left side of midfield, he switched the point of attack to Julian Koide. Koide served the ball into the box, where Stijn Terlouw – with a defender draped all over him – struck an overhead side volley into the upper 90 for his ninth goal of the campaign.
Pelham would get their only score of the game when Rye was called for a penalty and the Pelicans’ striker sent Cox the wrong way.
After the game, Coach Small was ecstatic with the way his squad had played. “This is the way we envisioned them played together, the work rate and the togetherness, when the season began,” he said. Overall, the Garnets finish the season 13-3 and, as Class A 3rd seeds, will host a Round of 16 playoff game Saturday, October 22, against the winner of Thursday’s contest between these same Pelicans and Nanuet.
“It was fitting to see Jonas van Beurden, who was making his 55th career appearance over a four-year varsity career, score two brilliant goals,” continued Small. “I was thrilled to see Yves Briginshaw put in a fantastic 30 minute shift at left center back, and also impressed with the play of Arun Jaswal and Luca Parrode, both of whom showed a fantastic work rate throughout the evening.”
Stijn Terlouw extended the lead with his 9th and most picturesque goal of the season in the 45th minute.
Pelham got one back by converting a penalty kick in the 51st minute. Rye finishes the season with a 13-3 record and has earned a #3 seed in the upcoming Section 1 Class A playoffs. Class A has 28 teams, of which a maximum of 24 will qualify for the playoffs. Rye will host a Round of 16 game on Saturday, October 22 against an opponent to be determined.
Rye finishes 6-0 in the league and 13-3 overall.