The game’s result held little significance, but Ryan Richer did not care.
The Eastport-South Manor senior knows just one speed: full throttle. No All-Star Game would rein him in.
Richer blocked Mineola’s Dimas Cabrera’s shot on an empty net at the last second before crashing into the left post Saturday. That preserved a scoreless tie in the 30th minute, and East Hampton’s Jorge Naula eventually scored in the 76th minute to give Suffolk a 1-0 win over Nassau in the first of two 90-minute, senior boys soccer All-Star Games between the counties at Diamond in the Pines in Coram.
Suffolk won the second game, 3-1, behind Kevin Martinez’s goal and assist.
“It was definitely worth it,” said Richer, who was named Suffolk’s Most Valuable Player.
“That was the play of the game,” Glenn coach Lou Hanner said.
Richer left the game for a few minutes after the play. Despite colliding with the post at nearly full speed, he emerged with just a sore hand and thigh.
“I hit my head the last time,” Richer said. “Luckily this time nothing happened.”
MacArthur’s Sean Lyons played tremendously in goal, making six saves. But after a deflection in the box, he was off his line when Naula gathered the ball and shot into the bottom left corner.
“[Lyons] was a great keeper,” Naula said. “It was tough getting shots off him, and he made some really good saves.”
In the second game, neither team scored until the second half, when Bay Shore’s Martinez received a through ball from Westhampton’s James Brezinski and scored in the 63rd minute. Carle Place center back Giancarlo Cavallero equalized with a 68th-minute header, having never scored a varsity goal.
Martinez’s pass into the box in the 77th minute set up Roberto Orellana (Hampton Bays) for an assist on Axel Carrion’s (Patchogue-Medford) go-ahead goal.
In the 90th minute, Martinez slipped a pass to Brentwood’s Roberto Ventura inside the 18-yard box. Ventura tacked on the finishing touch.
“It was fun,” said Martinez, Suffolk’s MVP in the second game. “We used to play [travel soccer] together back in the day, and it was really good to get back together [with Ventura] and score goals.”