Sussex Academy falls to Friends in DIAA soccer quarterfinals

Seahawks finish with best record in school history
November 11, 2019

The Sussex Academy soccer team fell 3-1 in the quarterfinals of the state tournament to Wilmington Friends at Wilson Stadium in Smyrna.

The Seahawks got off on the wrong foot, as an own goal put the Quakers ahead 1-0 just one minute into the contest. Oryem Kilama scored the next two goals with assists from Shiloh Connor and Jack Taylor to lead 3-0 at the half.

Ryan Burke put the Seahawks on the scoreboard with an unassisted goal at the 60-minute mark.

The Quakers outshot the Seahawks 10-4 and held a slight 4-3 edge in corner kicks. Sussex Academy keeper Cole White made seven saves, while Quakers keeper Liam Hudgings had three stops.

“I always tell my team before they go out on the field that most mistakes occur in the first 10 minutes of the game,” said Sussex Academy head coach John Oberholtzer. “Unfortunately, I was too accurate. Wilmington Friends scored two goals in the first five minutes of the game. The kids fought hard and Friends scored another goal with five minutes left before the halftime.” 

The Quakers didn't score any for the remainder of the game. After Burke scored 20 minutes into the second half, he hit the post on another shot a few minutes later.

Sussex Academy ended the season at 11-5-1. It’s the most wins in their five-year history. 

“I believe the kids played against many teams that had more experience, and throughout the season, they played competitively,” Oberholtzer said. “The team received five first-team all-conferences and four second-team all-conferences and an honorable mention. We also placed three second-team all-state players. So all in all, Sussex Academy had a very challenging and successful season for the size and experience levels of the program.”

Wilmington Friends will face Indian River Wednesday, Nov. 13, in the semifinals. Game time is 6 p.m.


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