Plainsmen roll into Class AA soccer finals, 2-0 (with photo gallery)

One did it in dramaric fashion, the other was more methodical.

Neither Colonie nor Shenendeh


One did it in dramaric fashion, the other was more methodical.

Neither Colonie nor Shenendehowa cared how they won their boys’ soccer Class AA semifinal games Thursday at Colonie High School, as long as their seasons continued.

Colonie stunned previously unbeaten Bethlehem, 2-1, in the opening game of the double-header, getting late goals from Massimo Smiroldo and Tommy Osipitan to move into a championship game for the first time in some 30 years Monday at 7 p.m.

Shenendehowa, an old hand at postseason success, got an Adam Barlow goal off a defensive mistake and a late Michael Jenkins penalty kick to beat Guilderland, 2-0, in the second half of the all-Suburban Council final four.

“They’re hard to play,” Shenendehowa coach Mike Campisi said. “They’re in between the old Guilderland style and what Mike [Kinnally] is trying to do. They put everything into the box.”

Barlow scored 23:43 into the first half, pouncing on a ball that bounced free in the penalty area. Jenkins put away a penalty kick after a teammate was taken down on the box on a restart with 9:30 left in the game.

“We lost to them, 2-1, early in the year, and one of the goals was also on a goalkeeping error,” said Kinnally, whose Dutchmen finished 10-6-3 and were coming off a 2-0 win over Big 10 champion Albany in the quarterfinals. “I don’t want to say, ‘If you take away two blunders,’ because Shen caused them. They were unfortunate miscues.

“I was pleased the way we played top of the box to top of the box. Shenendehowa was seeded No. 1 for a reason. They’ve only lost one game all year.”

Guilderland caused the 17-1-0 Plainsmen some trouble in the midfield early on, as Vito Mesiti and Peter Scatena created chances.

“The problem was that we weren’t matched up,” said Campisi, who has coached 16 sectional championship teams. “Once we matched up, we had better control of the game.”

“I think they came out hard because we beat them earlier in the season. They knew how we played, and tried to press up top and keep us from controlling the ball, which they did in the first half,” said Shenendehowa central defender Joe Kromer.

Campisi, whose team is short on height, was also worred about Guilderland’s restarts.

“Guilderland puts you on your heels. They play a lot of dangerous balls into the box,” he said.

“I told the guys, you can’t give up fouls in our defensive half of the field. They’re goiung to put the ball in the box. Anything can happen.”

“We had momentum, then we made a mistake in the net, which killed our momentum,” Kinnally said. “It takes a while, but we came back from that. I thought we were playing really well, then the PK came. It’s hard to come back from something like that, that late.”


Colonie trailed Bethlehem, 2-1, with just over 10 minutes to go when Smiroldo and Osipitan extended their team’s season.

Smiroldo got the 13-6-0 Raiders even when his looping shot from 25 yards slipped under the crossbar.

“It felt good when I shot it,” the senior midfielder said.

“Masso always thinks positive,” sad Colonie coach Mike Trimarchi. “To be honest, I thought if it dipped, it was going to go in. I don’t think in the first half was had a single shot on frame. I kept telling them to shoot.”

Ospitan buried his one clean chance of the game, running onto a great through ball from Paulino Curto.

“Paulino Curto played the ball across, and when I cut the defender, I saw the goalie had committed,” said Osipitan, who scored five goals in Colonie’s 6-0 quarterfinal win over Shaker. “I thought, ‘This was the chance.’ It ended up in the bback of the net.”

“Being down, 1-0, made us a little nervous,” said Smiroldo. “Scoring that goal to tie us up raised everybody’s spirits, and then Tommy finishing that last goal — I can’t even describe the feeling.

“The first time, they beat us, 4-0. It killed us. We knew we were better than that. We weren’t prepared.

“This time we wanted to make a statement that we want to be on top, and we deserve to be on top.”

“Coach told us to keep fighting. When Massimo scored that first goal, our morale shifted up,” said Osipitan.

Trimarchi, a Colonie grad, is happy to be playing on his home field at least one more time.

“To know that we have the opportunity to win the first title for Colonie in a while feels pretty good,” he said.

Categories: High School Sports

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