By BRIAN CUNNIFF
CAPE MAY COURT HOUSE — The players on the Middle Township High School boys soccer team put a disappointing loss in the South Jersey Coaches Tournament behind them with an impressive victory Wednesday afternoon.
Two days after a 4-1 loss to West Deptford in the second round of the Coaches Cup, Middle posted a victory over an 11-win Group IV team at the Boyd Street Field.
Landon Osmundsen’s impressive strike from 25 yards with 17 minutes remaining accounted for the only scoring as the Panthers grabbed a 1-0 result over a formidable Millville side in their final regular-season game.
“That’s a great test for us going into the (South Jersey Group II) playoffs,” Middle coach Scott Kurkowski said, “against a really good team that has a home game in Group IV South.”
The game remained scoreless past the 60-minute mark until Osmundsen struck for the winner. Teammate Matt Sgrignioli forced a turnover when Millville tried to play the ball out from the back. The ball fell to Osmundsen, who took a shot from 25 yards that hit the upper 90 on the left side of goal.
“At that point, I thought we had had more chances than they did and I felt confident we would get one to fall at one point,” Kurkowski said. “And then I thought once we got one that we’d get some energy behind us and pull it out.”
The goal by Osmundsen was his second highlight-reel tally in eight days. Last week against Ocean City, the junior’s glancing header off a cross by Austin Carr was the game-winner in a 4-2 victory.
“Landon’s an awesome player with a very bright future,” Kurkowski said. “We’re happy to have him in the program.”
Devon Bock made six saves for the shutout in goal, his seventh of the season.
Middle (14-3-3) is off until Monday’s first-round state tournament game against Manchester Township.
“We’re happy to get a good result like this going into the playoffs,” Kurkowski said.