Luchini’s Two Goals Lift NA To 1st Opening Round Win Since ’05
For the first time in nine years the North Allegheny Boys’ Soccer Team has advanced to the WPIAL quarterfinals. Not since 2005 had the Tigers won an opening round playoff game, but that changed thanks to a 3-0 triumph over the Taylor Allerdice Dragons on Monday night. NA’s previous opening round win was a 1-0 upset victory over Bethel Park in 2005.
On a damp night at Newman Stadium, the Tigers matched up with the ninth-seeded Dragons who were vying for their first ever WPIAL playoff win. The former City League school went toe to toe with the Tigers in the first half, but fell behind on a phenomenal play by NA in the game’s 13th minute. Junior Nate Hall delivered a beautiful crossing pass from the left corner to freshman Josh Luchini who headed the ball past Allderdice goalie Dane Jacomen for a 1-0 Tigers lead.
The Dragons, who seemed to be breathing fire in the early moments of the game, were slowed to a screeching halt by the Tigers defense following the Luchini goal. North Allegheny yielded only two shots on net in the second half, both requiring terrific saves by Tigers goalie Luke Nolan. With Allderdice held at bay, North Allegheny added on to the lead on another marker by Luchini with 10:24 left in the game to bring the score to 2-0, Tigers. The goal by Luchini, his sixth of the season and second of the night, was assisted by Bobby Upton. For his two-goal effort, Luchini was named the Wright Automotive Player of the Game by the North Allegheny Sports Network.
With 3:48 remaining, senior Kevin Daugherty fed a pass to junior Michael Peters on the doorstep for a goal and a 3-0 Tigers advantage. The goal by Peters ensured the Tigers a trip to the quarterfinals to face the reigning PIAA champion Upper St. Clair Panthers on Thursday night. The top-seeded and undefeated Panthers toppled North Hills on Monday night, 2-0, in the WPIAL first round.
The win improves North Allegheny’s record to 10-7-2 on the season, while Allderdice’s season ends with a mark of 10-5-3. Thursday night’s quarterfinal game against Upper St. Clair, at a site and time to be determined as of the time of this article, will be broadcast live via the internet on the North Allegheny Sports Network.
Boys Soccer Summary vs. Allderdice, 10-20-14
|SCORE BY HALVES||1||2||FINAL|
Boys Soccer Individual Scoring vs. Allderdice
|North Allegheny||Josh Luchini (Nate Hall)||27:50|
|North Allegheny||Luchini (Bobby Upton)||10:24|
|North Allegheny||Michael Peters (Kevin Daugherty)||3:48|