OCEAN CITY – One of the major benefits for a team that earns the top seed in the state playoffs is that its opening-round game usually passes without much of a challenge.
The Ocean City High School boys soccer team enjoyed such an experience Tuesday afternoon at the Tennessee Avenue sports complex.
The Raiders, the No. 1 seed in the South Jersey Group III Tournament, breezed to an 8-0 victory over No. 16 Bridgeton to advance to the sectional quarterfinal round.
Ocean City will host No. 9 Lacey Township on Thursday. Lacey posted a 1-0 victory over No. 8 Seneca in its round-of-16 game on Monday.
The Raiders controlled all the first half against Bridgeton, taking a 3-0 lead at the break behind goals by Trevor Paone, Luke Varallo and Hunter Paone. Varallo and Hunter Paone each added another, Anthony Inserra scored twice and Sean Zellers added another in the second half.
Josiah Nistorenko, one of South Jersey’s assist leaders, had five helpers in the victory. He has 20 for the season.
Garrett Vliet made just one save and was credited with the shutout in goal. Brian Calderon and Chase Jones also made a save each during their time in goal in the contest.
Ocean City improved to 16-2-1 with the win.
— Brian Cunniff