Victories over Merrimack and then Pinkerton in much-anticipated Mack Plaque play last week left the Londonderry High boys’ soccer squad with a four-game undefeated streak rolling and a very solid 5-2-1 record in tough Division I.
The Lancers, who won three matches and tied one during their modest unbeaten skein, downed Merrimack early in the week and then Pinkerton in the Mack match last Saturday, Sept. 24.
The Lancers pushed their undefeated streak to three games by virtue of a 2-1 success against a host Merrimack High Tomahawks’ crew Tuesday, Sept. 20.
Londonderry netted the only goal of the first half when Nalen Iarribino converted off a corner kick.
Then in the second half, Iarribino converted on a penalty kick to give his side a 2-0 advantage.
The Tomahawks worked on a comeback after that and got one goal back but couldn’t manage the second.
Londonderry goalie Cam Wheeler made two saves his contribution to his squad’s success.
“We continue to create some great scoring opportunities. We can take a lot of pressure off of ourselves if we start converting,” said coach Todd Ellis.
The Lancer crew responded extremely well to the pressures of the Mack Plaque rivalry by defeating the Pinkerton Academy Astros in a 2-0 shutout at Londonderry High on the afternoon of Saturday, Sept. 24.
Juniors Josh Rutina and Luca Amarena handled the scoring for the victorious hosts, with Amarena setting up Rutina for a pretty goal 12:15 into the match, and Rutina then returning the favor by setting up Amarena for an insurance tally with 14:58 left to go in the contest.
Londonderry keeper Wheeler made seven stops his contribution to his contingent’s third shutout of the campaign, and Ellis ended up with plenty of reasons to feel good about the work his Lancers had put forth.
“This is a young group, and this was a good atmosphere for them to challenge themselves,” said the coach. “It was a good win and we can enjoy it for the weekend, but we have to realize that we have Salem on Tuesday and we have more work to do.”
Following that home match against Salem this Tuesday, Sept. 27 that was played after Londonderry Times press time, Ellis’ boys face a home battle against the Timberlane Regional High Owls from Plaistow on Thursday, Sept 29 .
Josh Rutina heads to the goal during the Lancers’ Mack Plaque win over Pinkerton. Rutina bagged a goal and an assist in the win. Photo by Chris Paul