Ocean City begin playoff run on Wednesday at Long Island with the winner traveling to unbeaten Ottawa on Saturday
The Ocean City Barons, needing a win to clinch a spot in the post-season, defeated the New Jersey Rangers 3-0 in their final regular season game at Carey Stadium. However, based on the Ottawa Fury’s 2-0 win over the Brooklyn Knights earlier in the evening, the Barons were already in the playoffs before tonight’s game even kicked off, taking some of the pressure off the evening’s proceedings.
Ocean City qualifies for the playoffs for the fourth time in the last six years and will try to improve on their 1-3 playoff record during that span. They will begin their run at the PDL championship game (which will be broadcast on Fox Soccer Channel August 8) on Wednesday when they will hit the road to play the Long Island Rough Riders (12-2-2). The winner of that game will travel to Ottawa to take on the undefeated Fury (12-0-4) for the right to advance to the PDL Elite Eight. (VIDEO HIGLIGHTS AFTER THE JUMP)Video highlights courtesy of NBC40 | Follow them on Twitter @nbc40sports
Game Stats OCEAN CITY NEW JERSEY Shots 13 6 Saves 6 7 Fouls 2 12 Offsides 4 2 Corners 3 1
School / Hometown
GK - Tunde Ogunbiyi
Boston College / Gwynedd, PA
DEF - Jamal Neptune
Hofstra / East Windsor, NJ
DEF - John Fletcher
Eckherd College (’09) / Uxbridge, ENG
DEF - Sal Pistone
Stockton College / Blackwood, NJ
MID - J.T. Noone
Temple / Harrisburg, PA
MID - Ryan Richter
LaSalle / Southampton, PA
MID - Junior Chapman
LaSalle / Winslow, NJ
MID - Rory McCrea
Hofstra / Leeds, England
MID - Neal Melchionni
Lehigh / Marmora, NJ
FWD - Steve Miller
Colgate / Ivyland, PA
FWD - Byron Carmichael
Marshall (’03) / Lumberton, NJ
Vermont / Turnersville, NJ
LaSalle / Avalon, NJ
LaSalle / Cinneminson, NJ
Hofstra / Audubon, NJ
Hofstra / Ocean City, NJ
5th (OCEAN CITY)
Byron Carmichael (Ryan Richter)
25th (OCEAN CITY)
Byron Carmichael (Steve Miller)
78th (OCEAN CITY)
Ryan Richter (Unassisted)
Ocean City qualifies for the playoffs for the fourth time in the last six years and will try to improve on their 1-3 playoff record during that span. They will begin their run at the PDL championship game (which will be broadcast on Fox Soccer Channel August 8) on Wednesday when they will hit the road to play the Long Island Rough Riders (12-2-2). The winner of that game will travel to Ottawa to take on the undefeated Fury (12-0-4) for the right to advance to the PDL Elite Eight.
Byron Carmichael capped off one of his best seasons to date with a pair of goals to lead the Barons to victory on Sunday night. Carmichael finishes the season as the club’s leading scorer with a career-high 11 goals and one assist for 23 points. Ryan Richter added another and assisted on one of the Carmichael goals to finish in second with six goals, three assists for 15 points.
The Barons defense earns their sixth shutout of the season, the second highest single-season total in franchise history. Their 14 goals allowed in 16 games are the fewest goals ever allowed by a Barons backline in a season. Tunde Ogunbiyi earned five of those shutouts, also tied for the second most in club history (as an individual) and his 0.67 goals against average is second only to current Miami F.C. goalkeeper Pat Hannigan’s 0.56 GAA in 2004.
Carmichael put the Barons on the scoreboard quickly in only the 5th minute of play. Ryan Richter sent Carmichael up on the right side with a pass from midfield and the Lumberton, NJ native grounded the shot to the far left corner.
At 25 minutes, Steven Miller assisted Carmichael for his second goal. Miller fought off a defender as he dribbled down the right wing and as he approached the end line, crossed it right in front of goal where Carmichael buried it past Rangers goalkeeper John Weber.
Carmichael was looking for a hat trick throughout the rest of the half, and though he had some quality chances, he was unable to finish, leaving him one goal shy of the club’s single-season record of 12, set by Ruben Mingo in 2004.
The Barons closed out the first half with a 2-0 lead and began the second half with a few substitutions. Billy Pinto, Dan Korenyi, and Dwayne Dove replaced JT Noone, Carmichael and Neil Melchionni respectively.
Most of the second half was quiet until the final 15 minutes of play. Austin Johnson, the 18-year old making his second PDL appearance, started a run of opportunities that resulted in a goal for the Barons. Johnson took a shot that was headed away at the left post by a Rangers defender. The deflected shot was sent into the middle, where it moved around between players. Richter gained possession, shot, and scored on the lower left side to make it 3-0 in the 78th minute.
A few minutes later Johnson tried for another, but the shot hit the post on the right side of the goal. Following that, Giancarlo Granese, another teenager seeing action in the final regular season game, fired a ball on net that was saved by Weber.
The Barons’ improve their record against New Jersey to 5-0, outscoring them 19-3 during those games.
Ocean City finishes the regular season with a 9-4-3 record, which is good enough for third place in the Northeast Division. Their 2009 home record stands at 4-1-3, which improves their overall home record since they joined the PDL in 2003 to 39-9-11, the second best record out of the 68 teams across North America.
2009 Statistical Leaders:
Goals: Byron Carmichael (11)
Assists: William Swetra (5)
Points: Byron Carmichael (23)
Minutes Played: Rory McCrea (1,213)
Players who played in all 16 games: Byron Carmichael, J.T. Noone, Rory McCrea, Jamal Neptune (Noone is the only player who started every game)
GAA: Tunde Ogunbiyi (0.67)
Shutouts: Tunde Ogunbiyi (5)
Wins: Tunde Ogunbiyi (5)
* With Joe Banks injured for the final two games of the regular season, Byron Carmichael leap frogs the captain to finish the season as the club’s all-time leader in minutes played with 6,224.
* In 2009, Byron Carmichael scored a goal every 89 minutes, the highest single-season scoring rate in club history. He scored 11 goals in 979 minutes played.