What Sean Moran described as an “out-of-body experience” were the moments immediately after his overtime goal brought Southold a 1-0 triumph over Pierson/Bridgehampton and a second straight Suffolk County Class C boys soccer championship.
When Moran’s sixth goal of the season, set up by Ryan DiGregorio, hit the net 14 minutes 18 seconds into sudden-victory overtime, he and the rest of the First Settlers raced toward their fans at Diamond in the Pines in Coram.
“They were screaming our names,” Moran said. “It was a magical moment.”
It was Southold’s 17th county title since 1978.
A week later, the First Settlers, sporting their traditional Mohawk haircuts for the playoffs, faced crushing disappointment in the Southeast Region Class C final on the same field. They fell short against Rhinebeck in a penalty-kick tiebreaker, 3-1, after having played to a 1-1 draw through 110 minutes.
The First Settlers (12-6) came within inches of going to Middletown for the state semifinals. Early in the first overtime period, Southold’s Anderson Garcia drove a blazing shot that goalkeeper Spencer Hutchins managed to deflect off the crossbar.
“I don’t think anyone on our team should feel unsuccessful after this result because … we are still county champs and made it here,” said Shayne Johnson, who led Southold with 15 goals this year. “We’re still a family basically. There’s still an upside to it.”
When asked afterward to sum up his team’s season, Southold coach Andrew Sadowski replied, “Short.”
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