Railer soccer team falls on the road

Ethan Denton
Newton's Eduardo Lopez-Garcia dribbles down the field in the first half against Andover on Thursday, Sept. 17 at Trojan Stadium. The Railers dropped the match 3-1

ANDOVER – The Newton soccer team hit the road on Thursday for a matchup against the Andover Trojans. A slow start would ultimately prove to be too much to overcome as the Railers fell to the hosts 3-1.

“We came out flat,” Newton head coach Scott Jantzi lamented afterwards. “All three of those goals could have been prevented. I think we made our adjustments at halftime and came out with more energy and were able to put some things together.”

Both teams got an early shot on goal but neither was able to put a lot of pressure on the other until the Railers had an opportunity in front of the Trojan goal in the 19th minute. However, the whistle blew for offsides and Newton was turned away.

The Trojans got on the board first in the 26th minute. A long throw-in came into the box and bounced once before finding the head of Grayson Anderson who directed the ball home for a 1-0 Andover lead.

For the remainder of the first half, Newton applied a significant amount of pressure to the Trojan defense but they were not able to find the back of the net. One of the best chances came in the 33rd minute when Collin Hershberger’s long range effort on goal was knocked away by Andover goalkeeper Micaiah Mann.

Andover went into halftime with the one goal advantage. To that point, each side had gotten off five shots.

Early in the second half, the Railers conceded a second goal when Andover’s Jack Moll played a ball into the penalty area where Trojan striker Chase Chanminaraj got his foot on it and drove it past Newton keeper Selvin Abrego for a 2-0 lead in the 49th minute.

Not long after, the Trojans nearly went up three as Abrego made a terrific save of a close shot right on his line.

That save would prove to be big as the Railers got on the board in the 59th minute. The ball came to forward Mikey Parga at the right side of the penalty area and his strike made it past Mann and into the net to bring Newton within 2-1.

The momentum gained on the goal was wiped away minutes later as Chanminaraj passed to teammate Jeremiah Rather on the left edge of the 18-yard box. Rather directed the ball back in front of goal where Chanminaraj poked it home to put the Trojans up 3-1 in the 65th minute.

“They went up two-nil so we had to throw numbers forward,” Jantzi said. “We started playing three in the back and they were able to squeak another one in. We were able to get more pressure on them but they just came out with more energy than we did.”

Jantzi was of course disappointed but still likes his team going forward.

“We’re a good team,” Jantzi said. “Sometimes you have to have a game like this to get things back on track. And we will. We’re mentally tough enough to do that.”

The Railers will get back to action next Tuesday at Fischer Field when Andover Central comes to town.

Halftime: Andover 1-0. Andover: Chanminaraj (2), Anderson (1). Newton: Parga (1). Shots: Andover 12, Newton 11. Saves: Andover: Mann 4; Newton: Abrego 4.