POINT PLEASANT BORO – The Point Pleasant Boro boys soccer team got away from its game plan for a brief stretch of the second half on Wednesday and it cost the Panthers a one-goal lead against Shore Conference Class B South rival Jackson Liberty.

It took all of 57 seconds to get that lead back and once they got the lead, the Panthers did not falter.

Senior Quin Hornish scored the go-ahead goal less than a minute after Jackson Liberty tied the game in the 45th minute and Point Boro hung on to beat Jackson Liberty for its fourth straight win. With the victory, Point Boro moves into sole possession of first place in B South ahead of Jackson Liberty, which dropped its first divisional match on Wednesday.

Point Boro's Kenny Fellows (1) and Jackson Liberty's Jake Mackenzie challenge for a ball in the air on Wednesday. (Photo by Matt Manley)

“We didn’t come out with the same effort and intensity to start the second half and it cost us,” senior midfielder Kenny Fellows said. “Once we saw the ball go in the net, I think it kind of woke us up and we got back to playing our game.”

Hornish ran onto a ball sent forward by Ryan Remondelli, drew Lions goalkeeper Aidan Benbrook off of his line and slipped the winning shot to the far corner of the goal.

“We’ve been waiting for Quin to get that goal for a while now and it was really good to see,” Point Boro coach Pete Casalino said. “I always tell the guys that a great scorer scores can go seven or eight chances between goals. With Quin, it felt like he had about a thousand, so we all figured it was coming soon.”

Less than a minute earlier, Jackson Liberty junior Brandon Pirog one-timed a pass from senior Bryan Garry with a low left-footed strike that found the net to tie the game at 1. The opportunity was the first in a wave of Lions chances over the first 28 minutes of the second half that followed a mostly-uneventful first half heading into the wind.

“We’re a team that has to keep the ball moving – play it to feet, play it to space, one or two touch and get rid of it,” Casalino said. “For the first few minutes of the second half, we were trying to take guys one-on-one in the middle of the field and when we do that, bad things usually happen, just like they did on the goal to start the half.”

Point Boro senior goalkeeper Gabe Pesante made five saves Wednesday, including two key stops in the second half with the Panthers nursing a one-goal lead. He made a sprawling save in the 60th minute on direct kick by Brandon Pirog to the upper left of the net, then dove for a save on a low shot by senior Adam Haidi from six yards out in the 65th.

Jackson Liberty had its last quality opportunity when Pirog volleyed a cross by Haidi from right to left out of the air and hit the crossbar of the football goal post in the 68th minute.

Point Boro grabbed a 1-0 lead on a penalty kick by Fellows in the 26th minute. Jackson Liberty defender Ben Siragusa was called for a push of Point Boro sweeper Sam Monoco on a fifty-fifty ball in the air following a throw-in by Fellows.

“I wanted to get the ball to (Monoco) on the near post because he is our guy on that play,” Fellows said. “I saw the referee say something to (Siragusa) before the play, I guess warning him not to foul. I just tried to give our guys a chance and we were able to get a call.”

While Pirog had several dangerous moments around the Panthers goal, Point Boro limited Haidi – the Lions’ attacking center midfielder – to two shots and kept him quiet in the first half before Haidi made more of an impact in the first part of the second half.

“We had to be on our game defensively because they have some good offensive players,” Fellows said. “Our defensive center midfielder, Nick DeCurtis, did a great job on Haidi and I think it frustrated him.”

With four straight wins after a 1-2 start – with all four coming within Class B South – Point Boro is beginning to make another move thanks to wins over Donovan Catholic and Jackson Liberty. The team also hopes to bring back senior Jake Woodring (quadriceps) at some point, although he is currently out indefinitely, according to Casalino.

“The guys are sitting around waiting for us to get healthy, but I think knowing that we have that potential to improve down the road is a motivating factor,” Casalino said. “They are working with what we have right now and they have been improving.”


Box Score

Point Boro 2, Jackson Liberty 1





Jackson Liberty (4-3, 4-1)




Point Boro (5-2, 5-1)




Goals (Assists): (JL) Pirog (Garry) 45’; (P) Fellows (PK) 26’, Hornish (R. Remondelli) 45’
Saves: (JL) Benbrook 1; (PB) Pesante
Shots: Jackson Liberty, 9-8