It is a great time of year for New Jersey high school soccer fans and players alike, as the 2021 playoffs began yesterday. Here is a look at how three postseason tilts shook out.
Chatham 3, Colonia 0
The fifth-seeded Chatham boy’s soccer team took care of No. 12 Colonia, 3-0, in the first round of the NJSIAA/North Jersey, Section 2, Group 3 State tournament yesterday, in Chatham.
Goals by Gabe Toledo, Jack Gruppuso and Daito Sho propelled the Cougars (9-5-1) to their fourth meeting with No. 13 Mendham (6-8-2) this year on Thursday at 10 a.m. at home, in the state quarterfinals.
Toledo registered his eight goal of the year at the 19th-minute mark of the first half.
Senior back Gruppuso picked up his first tally of the campaign, with the helper from Peter Tolkin, for a 2-0 lead at the 32nd-minute.
Sho capped the game’s scoring in the fourth minute of the second half.
Chatham posted a 1-1-1 record in its three games versus the Minutemen this season. Colonia finished the year at 6-13-1.
Summit 3, West Morris 0
Behind two goals from Daniel Farberov and goalie Sebastian Arias’ shutout, second-seeded Summit (14-5) upended West Morris, 3-0, in the first round of the NJSIAA North Jersey Section 2, Group 3 tournament on Monday, in Summit.
Gabe Malik picked up the other tally for the Hill Toppers.
Summit hosts 10th-seeded Orange in Thursday’s sectional quarterfinal.
West Morris ended its season at 5-12-1.
Fort Lee 3, Morris Hills 2
Timofey Strele was absolutely outstanding, scoring a hat trick in eighth-seeded Fort Lee’s 3-2 win over No. 9 Morris Hills in the first round of the NJSIAA North Jersey, Section 1, Group 3 State tournament, in Fort Lee.
Strele now owns 20 goals and two assists for the season.
Fort Lee (12-6) will face top-seeded Ramapo in the quarterfinals on Thursday.
Trailing 2-0 early in the second half, Yonny Figueroa scored for Morris Hills (13-6-1), slicing the deficit in half. But Strele notched his third of the contest after drawing the infraction and then blasting a penalty kick by the netminder for the game-winner.
Bryant Morales also scored for Morris Hills, making it 3-2, but that is as close as it would get for the visiting squad.
Ian Aragonez and Alex Oakley made one assist each in the victory. Benjamin Tamas and Alton Tafilaj spilt goaltending time for Fort Lee, as Tamas made five stops, while Tafilaj finished with three saves.
— Jerry Del Priore