On a rainy Wednesday night, the Ridgefield High boys soccer team’s first half was a little more productive than Stamford’s second half.
Doing all its scoring in the opening 40 minutes, Ridgefield built a two-goal halftime lead and then hung on for a 3-2 victory over Stamford at Tiger Hollow.
Senior co-captain Charlie Poremba provided two goals for Ridgefield, with junior Ben Ragland adding the other goal
“It’s nice to get two goals individually,” said Poremba, “but I think it showed a lot of character from the team to be able to hold on to that lead when Stamford was pressing, so I’m really proud of the boys for that.”
The Tigers notched three goals in the first half, and managed to hold on to defeat Stamford 3-2, despite conceding two goals, and being forced to defend for much of the second half. Co-captain and senior midfielder Charlie Poremba notched a brace, and junior forward Ben Ragland scored one goal, his second of the season.
Stamford put up a fight, and early in the first half each side had long stretches of possession, with Ridgefield keeper Ray Dearth, Stamford goalie Esteban Vargas, and both backlines under pressure.
Ridgefield took an early 1-0 lead as a scuffed shot in the box was finished by Ragland to give the hosts a 1-0 lead.
Stamford responded with 23 minutes left in the opening half, as Brian Coronado put a shot past Dearth to bring the Black Knights level.
Not long after conceding, Ridgefield was awarded a free kick in a dangerous position. Drew Conte played a ball that Poremba converted for a 2-1 Ridgefield lead.
Play continued to be end-to-end, with both sides testing the opposing defense. One of the many forays into the final third by Ridgefield saw Stamford goalkeeper Vargas parry away a well-taken shot by Ruben Mendoza. Poremba got the rebound and scored for his second goal of the match and his third of the young season.
Towards the close of the half, the Black Knights continued to seriously test the Ridgefield goal, almost scoring on many occasions. But substitute keeper Ryan Sheafe (who replaced Dearth with 10 minutes left in the first half) and the Tigers’ defense held on for a 3-1 advantage at the break.
Early in the second half, however, the Black Knights pulled a goal back to close within 3-2.
Mendoza was denied by both the post and the Stamford keeper, while the Black Knights failed to convert on several opportunities in front of the Ridgefield goal.
The Black Knights continued to press for the tying goal, but Sheafe and the Ridgefield defense were able to keep the visitors off the scoreboard the rest of the way.