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Boys’ Booters Earn Wins And Tie To Begin Slate



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Newtown High School’s boys’ soccer team defeated visiting Pomperaug of Southbury 2-0 for a Senior Day victory in the season opening contest, and first-year Head Coach Ryan Lyddy’s debut, at Blue & Gold Stadium on October 1.

“It was great to be out here,” said Lyddy, adding that he gives credit to his players for remaining focused despite the circumstances caused by the coronavirus.

Ryan Ruddy set up Jack Petersen for a header off a corner kick, and Ruddy netted the other goal in the season-starting triumph. “I think the kids played well. It was exciting, it was fast,” Lyddy said of that game.

Then came a 1-1 tie with visiting Bethel on October 3. Brandon Akbas evened the score after the Wildcats struck first, and the Nighthawks threatened to break the tie to no avail.

They created chances on several through balls and strong passing plays, Akbas also had a long throw-in that led to an opportunity, and Tanner Trede smashed a one-time volley of a bouncer that was denied and led to a corner kick late in regulation.

“In the second half we were knocking on the door the whole day, but soccer is a weird game like that,” Lyddy said.

Newtown had strong defensive play from Mateo Moura, Hunter Baillargeon, Clayton Kunzweiler, and Petersen.

NHS got back into the win column with a 2-1 victory at New Milford on October 6 as Petersen and Ruddy both hit the net.

Goalkeepers Chris Shaker and Connor Mandarano have both contributed in net early on.

In the opener, seniors Akbas, Tyler DiMartino, Sam Edwards, Tyler Grosso, Julio Hernandez, Jasin Kodzodiku, Kunzweiler, Mandarano, Petersen, Ruddy, Adem Selmani, Shaker, Luke Steimel, Leonardo Toledo, and Trede were all recognized.

Justin Zemo, left, makes a pass during Newtown's tie with Bethel at Blue & Gold Stadium on October 3. —Bee Photos, Hutchison
Brandon Akbas looks to make a move on a defender.
Gregory Gargano, right, goes up for the ball along with a Bethel player.
Mateo Moura has his foot on the ball as he dribbles one-on-one.
Tanner Trede plays the ball for Newtown.
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