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Becahi boys knock off Liberty in soccer

Not even a Beca bounce could stop the Golden Hawks from pounding the Liberty Hurricanes in the Hawks’ 6-1 victory over the ‘Canes last Friday at Bethlehem Catholic.

“They wanted it. They wanted it,” said Becahi boys head soccer coach John Hohn. “And we came off a big win earlier in the week against Pocono Mountain West (10-2), and they played well on that large field. This is a very small field, and that’s our advantage here, so Liberty comes here, and we have to capitalize on it. We tried a different formation today as well. Some of my guys who normally play in the back of the field were up front because they’re more aggressive, and that gave us that push up high, and it worked.”

Liberty’s only goal came on an own goal when the ball took two high bounces, last kicked by Becahi’s Matthew Yusella.

“It was unlucky. Beca bounce is what we call it. I don’t blame anyone for it,” said Becahi goalkeeper Christian Lopez, who had four saves. “I’ve always said that strikers can give you goals and win you games, but the defense is really what can win you championships. Our defense was really solid, and we worked together better than we ever had before. They got back on the ball, and stayed together, and were really aggressive, which I loved.”

While Becahi’s defense held off the Hurricanes, Becahi’s offense made its attack 10 minutes in.

Beca forward William Hawach took two shots a minute apart that just missed, when midfielder Alberto Cocirio blasted a shot to the upper left corner from 18 yards out on an assist by Sebastian Cortez.

“It was a wonderful goal, so I was very happy. It was a good curve,” said the exchange student from Italy, who made the Italian celebration mask sign across his face as the Hawks went up 1-0.

Liberty keeper John Smith made a tough save on a shot to the bottom corner by Ethan Wiles, and tipped a ball out for another save.

After the own goal tied the game with 2:48 remaining in the first half, Anthony Barczynski promptly scored on an assist by Cocirio.

“Alberto got a pass out of space to me at the edge of the area, and I saw the ball and knew I had to go for it, and I went to the keeper’s bottom corner and it went in,” Barczynski said. “It was good to get the momentum back right after they scored and carry that into halftime. That was a real boost.”

But as halftime approached, Coach Hohn had a decision to make.

“I actually was debating playing a more defensive game and riding out the 2-1, but I asked one of the captains, ‘What do you want to do?’” said Hohn. “This is their team too. They wanted to go for it. So I said, ‘Do it. When we get to about 15 minutes left, if we’re still 2-1, I’m gonna back up our defense and we’re gonna ride out a 2-1 win.’”

That wasn’t necessary, however, as Hawach scored twice within 25 seconds in the 54th minute to put the Hawks up 4-1, and after two big saves by Smith, Beca midfielder Peter Martinez found the back of the net twice within 90 seconds in the 77th minute.

“For them to score like they did, I couldn’t be more proud,” said Hohn. “It’s been years since this school beat Liberty, and I have 12 seniors, so these have been the [sigh] games the last three years, but they wanted it.”

Also on Friday, Freedom was a 4-1 winner over Easton.

Michael Krents, Stephen Callaghan, Omar Rodriguez, and Sebastian Garces were the Patriots’ scorers, while Peter Tichy had two assists, and Austin Hoffert had one.

Tristan Willey had three saves for the Pates.

Press photo by Katie McDonald From left to right are Anthony Barczynski, Christian Lopez, William Hawach, Peter Martinez and Alberto Cocirio.