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Uniondale beats upstart Farmingdale on penalty kicks to get to Nassau AA final

Edwin Castellon #4 of Uniondale celebrates with fans

Edwin Castellon #4 of Uniondale celebrates with fans who mobbed the field to celebrate the Knights' victory in penalty kicks over Farmingdale in the Nassau Class AA boys soccer semifinals at Hofstra on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2017. Credit: James Escher

Uniondale goalie Jose Romero scored the clinching goal of the penalty-kick round to give No. 2 Uniondale a victory over No. 11 Farmingdale after 110 scoreless minutes of soccer Friday night at Hofstra.

“I will always strike it left, but with power,” a jubilant Romero said. “I told my coach I’d make it and bring this win home.”

Romero, who also made six saves, gave Uniondale a 4-2 edge on penalty kicks. Carlos Ayala, Edwin Castellon and Darwin Velasquez also connected for the Knights (9-1-2), who will face No. 1 Syosset for the Nassau AA title Wednesday at 8 p.m. at Hofstra. Farmingdale finished 8-8 after upset victories over No. 6 Freeport and No. 3 Hicksville.

The Dalers’ goals in the penalty-kick round were by Brendan Murphy and Gianfranco Calio.

Though both teams were in attack mode in regulation, neither generated many good scoring chances, especially in the second half.

Uniondale’s Benjamin Medina had a blast from 20 yards go wide with 23 minutes left and the Knights nearly ended it in regulation when Giordano Williams’ chip shot from the right wing went high over the cage. Farmingdale did not threaten off a couple of corner kicks.

There was a little more action at the net in a scoreless first half. For Uniondale, Velasquez’s booming shot was saved by Andrew Needham 11 minutes into the game and five minutes later Velasquez’s centering pass for Ayala was headed just over the crossbar.

For Farmingdale, Calio’s header in front went just wide with 21 minutes left in the first half.

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