The Kennedy boys soccer team will be putting out one of their youngest teams onto the field this season.
On the other hand, Farmingdale, a Nassau County finalist in 2010, displayed a wealth of experience this past Saturday on the road to defeat the Cougars, 2-1, in the season opener.
“We were playing without our best player in Eric [Friedlander]. We are young, which is exciting,” said Jason Elias, Kennedy head coach. “I expect us to try really hard and go for it and be a tough team that works, but also be a very skilled team.”
Dalers’ midfielder Dennis Bocanegra put in the games’ first goal just minutes after the starting whistle past freshman goalkeeper Jake Silverman, who finished with 11 saves.
Farmingdale sent a number of shots wide and two off of the post as they kept the pressure up and the Kennedy defense on their heels. Fernando Cortez and Edis Canales used their speed in the middle to open up the defense and create chances for the visiting team.
In the opening minutes of the second half, Farmingdale continued their pressure, taking six corner kicks within the first five minutes. Despite that, Kennedy found a hole in the defense and tied the score at 1-1 in the 54th minute on a goal by senior Kevin Katz off of a pass from Skylar Rudolfsky.
The score would be short lived as Nader Golshahr collected a pass from Canales off of a rebound to give the Dalers their second lead of the game at 2-1 with a little more than 20 minutes remaining.
Kennedy struggled to create opportunities to equalize the score in the closing minutes as Farmingdale held on for a solid win on the first day of both teams’ seasons.
“Our middle is really solid with two of the best players you are going to see that work together in a while,” said Farmingdale head coach Brandon Oppenheim. “I see good things and am pleasantly surprised with the way we played.”
Kennedy will play a second home game on Tuesday against Great Neck South, arguably the top team in the conference in 2011.
“Goal scoring generates from the back, so we’ll need a strong defense to now win a couple of games,” said Katz.
Farmingdale will play in their home opener on Tuesday as well against visiting Freeport at 4:15 p.m.