NHIAA Soccer: Smith's two goals spark Londonderry past OwlsBy MICHAEL ABELSON
Special to the Union Leader
September 08. 2018 12:09AM
LONDONDERRY — It was just a week ago that the Londonderry boys’ soccer team saw a one-goal lead slip away against Manchester Memorial.
Friday, the Lancers found themselves down a goal with half an hour left in their match against Timberlane and battled back to win 3-2 for their second straight win.
“I thought it was a good reversal of how our game against Memorial went,” Londonderry coach Todd Ellis said. “It was nice to see guys fight back. Overall, the way we’ve been coming along the last week has been good. I thought our effort throughout the game was pretty consistent.”
After a game that went back and forth throughout it was two brilliant minutes from sophomore Hunter Smith that won the day for the Lancers. Smith got on the board in the 59th minute when he beat Timberlane goalie Connor Newman to the ball and chipped it over his head into the goal from 15 yards out.
Just under two minutes later Smith found the ball on his foot in the box, dribbled around two Owls and fired a shot into the far corner to put Londonderry ahead for good.
“(Smith) is a sophomore with a lot of upside, a lot of potential,” said Ellis. “We’re trying to get him to understand what he needs to do to be one of the top athletes in this group. If he can continue to work hard, and continue to develop, I think he’s got a bright future.”
Londonderry (2-1) got on the board in the 26th minute when junior Bisan Gurung took a perfect through-ball from James Cranmer and fired it home off the first touch.
Timberlane (0-3) answered two minutes later when junior Cam Ross potted one in close to send the game into halftime 1-1.
Ross left his mark again in the 51st minute when he put in a goal off his own rebound.
“He’s got an attacker’s mentality,” Timberlane coach Mitch Mencis said of Ross. “He’s always looking to the net, which we love and need more of.”
As has been the case so far this season, the Lancers split goaltending duties between juniors Alex Hufford and Colby DiMaggio. Hufford played the first half and made two saves while DiMaggio made seven stops in the second half as the Owls turned up the offensive pressure late in the game.
“We thought to start the year we’d split time for them,” Ellis said. “We asked them how they wanted to go about that, and they chose to split halves rather than games. As the season progresses we’ll see if we stick with that.”