Waters’ game-winning goal lifts Abington Heights to double overtime win

By Robert Tomkavage - rtomkavage@timesleader.com
Abington Heights’ Luke Abdalla dribbles the ball between two North Pocono defenders during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8. - Robert Tomkavage | Abington Journal
Abington Heights’ David Paramo puts a touch on the ball during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8. - Robert Tomkavage | Abington Journal
Abington Heights’ Yoshi Matsui plays the ball upfield during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8. - Robert Tomkavage | Abington Journal

SCRANTON — It took nearly 94 minutes, but Abington Heights finally broke through for a goal.

Sophomore Preston Waters scored his first career varsity goal, off an assist from Luke Abdalla, with 6:16 remaining in the second overtime period to lift Abington Heights over North Pocono, 1-0, in double overtime, in a Lackawanna League Div. 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8 at Fitzpatrick Field.

“We just kept attacking and we stayed with it,” Waters said. “We missed a lot of open chances, but, at the end of the day, we came out on top and that’s all that matters.

“I was just trying to be there for my team. Luke played the ball across and I just tried my best to put the ball in the net.”

It looked like Abington Heights’ Gray-Paul Bossi might have scored the game’s first goal with less than three minutes remaining in the second half, but the ball hit the crossbar and was cleared away by the North Pocono defense.

“I thought it was going in,” Bossi said. “It hit the outside angle of the crossbar and it didn’t work out.”

The Comets had another quality scoring chance with 3:21 left in the second half, but North Pocono goalkeeper Jordan Carr made a diving save on a hard shot from Abdalla and then recovered to stop Sean Wilkerson’s attempt on the doorstep.

Carr, who made 17 saves, also made a difficult stop on a shot by Jimmy Lefchak early in the second half.

“Jordan had a handful of point-blank saves and those aren’t easy to make,” Abington Heights head coach Frank Dyska said. “He came up big for his team and helped them stay in the game.”

Abington Heights (8-6-1) outshot North Pocono 11-2 in the first half and 27-9 overall.

“It was one of those games where you’re just knocking and knocking, and waiting,” Dyska said. “We knew if we stayed persistent it was going to come and eventually it did.”

Abington Heights goalkeeper Anthony Lionetti made three saves to keep the Trojans off the scoreboard.

North Pocono had two quality scoring chances in the second half, but Nate Kozik and Tracy Kenyon both sent shots wide of the net.

Dyska believes coming away with the win in a hard-fought game could pay dividends in the upcoming district playoffs.

“Double overtime games are not easy physically, and especially mentally, but we kept our composure and focus,” he said.

Abington Heights’ Luke Abdalla dribbles the ball between two North Pocono defenders during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8.
https://www.theabingtonjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/web1_ABJ-AH-Soccer-1.jpgAbington Heights’ Luke Abdalla dribbles the ball between two North Pocono defenders during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8. Robert Tomkavage | Abington Journal

Abington Heights’ David Paramo puts a touch on the ball during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8.
https://www.theabingtonjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/web1_ABJ-AH-Soccer-2.jpgAbington Heights’ David Paramo puts a touch on the ball during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8. Robert Tomkavage | Abington Journal

Abington Heights’ Yoshi Matsui plays the ball upfield during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8.
https://www.theabingtonjournal.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/web1_ABJ-AH-Soccer-3.jpgAbington Heights’ Yoshi Matsui plays the ball upfield during a Lackawanna League Division 1 boys soccer game Oct. 8. Robert Tomkavage | Abington Journal

By Robert Tomkavage

rtomkavage@timesleader.com

Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.

Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.