Manalapan was less than two minutes away Thursday from playing its third overtime game in three games to start the season, but fortunately for the Braves, there was a player on the team who had some celebrating to do.

Junior Justin Goldberg celebrated his 17th birthday by scoring the game-winning goal in the 79th minute to cap a 3-2 comeback win for the Braves - No. 7 in the Shore Sports Network Top 10 - against the Colonials.

PHOTO GALLERY: Freehold Boro vs. Manalapan by Paula Lopez

Justin Goldberg gets congratulations from Mike Schimbeno. (Photo by Paula Lopez)

Mark Tucillo started the winning sequence by beating two defenders on the right side and sliding the ball across to Goldberg. After missing the first shot he took, Goldberg pounced on the rebound and finished from the left side of the six-yard box with 1:14 left on the clock.

Manalapan junior Justin Goldberg. (Photo by Paula Lopez)

Manalapan (1-0-2, 1-0-2) trailed Freehold Boro 2-0 at halftime before senior Quentin Pickering scored four minutes into the second half off a diagonal ball from junior D'Angelo Reyes. Senior Gavin Lebright tied the game at 2-2 in the 62nd off a feed from Goldberg.

Abel Herrera opened the scoring for Freehold Boro (2-3, 2-2) in the 25th minute and Jake Brower followed with a goal in the 32nd to stake the Colonials to a 2-0 advantage.

Manalapan opened its season with ties against Marlboro and Howell before finally resolving a game on Thursday.

 

Sign Up For The SSN Newsletter

Please fill out this form to sign up for the Shore Sports Network newsletter.