HALFMOON, NY (NEWS10) — The Saratoga Springs boys soccer team coasted through an undefeated regular season, en route to earning the No. 1 seed in the Section II, Class AA playoffs. The Blue Streaks have not wavered in the postseason; they blanked Guilderland 4-0 Thursday night to move on to the sectional championship game.
The Flying Dutchmen kept the Saratoga offense relatively at bay in the first half. The Blue Streaks pushed across one goal in the 27th minute, courtesy of senior forward Ryan Farr.
But the ‘Toga offense erupted in the second half. Farr maneuvered around a pair of Flying Dutchmen, and delivered a strike with his left foot for his second goal of the game in the 42nd minute, lengthening his team’s lead to two goals.
Just over seven minutes later, Saratoga senior Theo Paladini took a pass from Farr, and tucked a shot just inside the left post, giving the Blue Streaks a 3-0 advantage.
Senior Lucas Varghese would tack on one more Saratoga goal with 22 minutes to play, and the Blue Streaks cruised to the title match with a 4-0 win.
Saratoga head coach Jeff Geller was elated that a group of players who have put in a lot of time on the pitch together have an opportunity to fight for a section championship.
“Super excited; you know, we’ve talked about this for a long time,” said Geller. “That was the goal since the preseason, and I’m just glad that it’s come to fruition. So, kudos to the boys; they worked well today. Guilderland’s a tough squad; very well-coached, and, you know, this was a big win for us.”
After being held scoreless for the first 26 minutes of the game, Farr explained the significance of his opening goal.
“It was 0-0 for a long time, and I feel like whoever gets the first goal usually has a big advantage, and opens things up,” said Farr. “And luckily it squeezed through the goalie’s legs, which was a little lucky, but we need some luck sometimes. I thought we moved the ball really well, and we found spaces, and I thought we capitalized on our chances, which we always strive to do, and that’s what we did tonight.”
Saratoga will now prepare for the two-seed, Shaker. The title game shakes down (pun intended) at Colonie High School on Tuesday. Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m.