Fayetteville-Manlius forward Cole Teelin (16) controls the ball when pressured by Liverpool’s Caleb Munski (16) in Saturday’s game at LHS Stadium. Teelin had two goals and one assist as the Hornets beat the Warriors 4-1.
Thinking it has all the pieces for a championship run, the Fayetteville-Manlius boys soccer team wanted nothing more than to topple the opponent responsible for keeping them from the Section III Class AA crown a season ago.
Liverpool has changed plenty from 2016, especially with the departure of stars like goalkeeper Ben Bowers, and the Hornets took full advantage on Saturday afternoon, scoring twice in 61 seconds early in the first half and moving on to prevail by a 4-1 margin.
Just 5:38 into the game, F-M generated its first scoring opportunity, and it resulted in a 1-0 lead when Cole Teelin’s pass from the right side found Cory Gallagher, who drilled a low shot from the left post into the right side of the net.
Before Liverpool could regroup, the Hornets were attacking again and, at the 6:39 mark, Teelin, fed by Gallagher, found himself open for a split-second at the point and converted his own low shot past Aaron Smith, the man charged with replacing Bowers in the Warriors’ net.
Somehow, Liverpool kept the swarming F-M attack from adding to that quick 2-0 lead the rest of the half. But in the 53rd minute Riley Burke got open at the point and scored off a feed from Noah Craig.
That made it 3-0, and Teelin provided a capper in the 64th minute, catching Hunter Knutsen’s pass in full stride off an errant Liverpool corner kick and making a 50-yard solo run to the net before beating Smith for the goal. The Warriors’ Jack Pento did score in the closing minutes to thwart F-M’s shutout attempt
Long before this, the Hornets handled its tough early-season opposition, starting on Aug. 31 when it blanked Cicero-North Syracuse 2-0 at Swan Pond with a pair of goals in the first 10 minutes.
Then the Hornets made a Sept. 2 visit to Jamesville-DeWItt, part of a doubleheader with the girls varsity teams squaring off, too. Though the Red Rams won the girls match, F-M’s boys controlled its side of the equation, winning by a score of 5-1.
Again, there were early-game conversions, enough to push the Hornets to a 3-0 edge. The Hornets didn’t let up, either, as Teelin produced a pair of goals and Knutsen had one goal and one assist to lead a well-balanced attack.
Other goals went to Grant Olick-Sutphen and Alex Bychkov after they had both found the net against C-NS. Burke, Craig and Nolan Chiles had one assist apiece as J-D did manage to score in the second half on Liam O’Malley’s goal.
Back in Salt City Athletic Conference Metro division action last Tuesday night, F-M ventured to Corcoran and pulled away to beat the Cougars 7-0, seeing nine different players help out on various scoring plays.
Only Knutsen scored twice, with Teelin and Gallagher each getting one goal and one assist. Bychkov, Burke and Craig found the net, too, with Olick-Sutphen, Nico Gascon and Luke D’Amato earning one assist apiece.
The win over Liverpool only adds to F-M’s confidence, and the Hornets are 4-0 going into Tuesday’s game at Nottingham, part of another busy week where Henninger visits Swan Pond Thursday and a rematch with C-NS looms Saturday at the Gillette Road complex.