Amsterdam overcomes slow start to top Johnstown in boys’ soccer


Johnstown’s Trey Naselli chases down Amsterdam’s Brodie McNeil Wednesday.

Photo Caption: Johnstown’s Trey Naselli chases down Amsterdam’s Brodie McNeil Wednesday. PETER R. BARBER/THE LEADER-HERALD

JOHNSTOWN — With the regular season rapidly coming to a close, the Amsterdam boys’ soccer team is looking to regain some of its early-season form.

After starting the season 3-1-1, the Rams had dropped six straight matches until posting a 2-1 win over Glens Falls on Monday.

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Amsterdam pushed its win streak to two games on Wednesday with a 5-1 victory over Johnstown in a Foothills Council South Division victory at Johnstown High School.

“We’re trying to keep playing hard,” Amsterdam coach Christopher Green said. “We’re staying focused on playing one game at a time and staying focused on the task at hand.”

Nick Covey led the Rams with two goals and two assists, while Brodie McNeil also scored twice. Nate Covey also scored for the Rams.

Maddox Pedrick scored the lone goal for Johnstown on an assist from Elijah Jones.

The Sir Bills got out of the gates quickly, scoring just 1:04 into the game when Pedrick scored on a pass from Jones to make it 1-0.

“We had high intensity when we started off,” Johnstown coach Nicole Naselli said. “We had lots of juggling and shifting positions.”

After the rough start, the Rams answered with an unassisted goal by Nick Covey to tie the game at 1-1 with 28:03 left in the first half.

McNeil gave the Rams their first lead with 17:22 to play in the first half on an assist from Nick Covey to make it 2-1.

“We got off to a tough start, but we settled in and played well,” Green said. “We regained our composure and played our game.”

The Rams finished the first half with a 16-4 advantage in shots and maintained their 2-1 lead into the break.

Amsterdam pushed its lead to two goals just 57 seconds into the second half when Nick Covey scored his second goal of the game to make it 3-1.

With 33:57 to play, Nate Covey added to the Rams’ advantage lofting a shot into the net from 35 yards out to make it 4-1.

McNeil scored the final goal of the game on an assist from Nick Covey with 18:56 remaining to make the score 5-1.

“We’re finally starting to play the way that we started the season,” Green said. “We’re starting to find our stride.”

Lucca Quatrini made three saves in the first half for the Rams, while Juan Rivas made three saves in the second half.

Kaden Chittenden finished with 11 saves for Johnstown, which has lost 11 straight since opening the season with 3-2 non-league win over Schoharie.

“Our goalie continues to grow every game,” coach Naselli said. “He’s doing a great job.”

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Playing its final home contest of the season, Johnstown honored its lone senior – Carter Ackerbauer – prior to Wednesday’s game.

Both teams are slated to wrap up their regular-season schedules this week.

Amsterdam (5-7-1 overall, 3-7-1 Foothills) is slated to host Gloversville on Friday at 3:30 p.m. before hosting the Sir Bills again on Saturday at 11 a.m.

Johnstown (1-12 overall, 0-10 Foothills) is scheduled to travel to Scotia-Glenville on Friday for a 7 p.m. game before traveling to Amsterdam on Saturday for an 11 a.m. contest and Glens Falls on Sunday for a 1 p.m. game.

“It’s going to be a challenge,” coach Naselli said. “Playing three games in a row won’t be easy.”

Halftime: Amsterdam led 2-1. Amsterdam scoring: Ni. Covey 2-2, McNeil 2-0, Na. Covey 1-0. Johnstown scoring: Pedrick 1-0, Jones 0-1. Goalies: Amsterdam, Quatrini 3 saves, Rivas, 3 saves. Johnstown: Chittenden, 11 saves.

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By Paul Wager

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