Bentworth lives up to expectations
Talented and senior-laden heading into the season, the Bentworth boys' soccer team had high expectations — if it could fill a couple of crucial holes.
Enter a slick sophomore — and a two-headed monster.
Nick Liermann is having one of the best statistical seasons for a goalkeeper in school history, and the dynamic scoring tandem of Nick McCann and Cody Levine has erased any doubts the Bearcats had about offense.
The result has been a season to remember for Bentworth (11-3, 10-0) in Section 4 A.
“We feel really good about the way things have gone,” senior defender Jim Liermann said. “At the beginning of the season, everybody was doubting how well we were going to do. It's been great to show them all what's up.”
What's up is the Bearcats' scoring — from 2.5 goals per game by last season's 10-8-1 team to 3.6 per contest this season.
What's down is the team's goals-against average — from 1.9 last year to 1.4 this season.
Considering Bentworth lost its top striker and goalkeeper from last season's playoff team to graduation, those figures have been a pleasant surprise.
“Even with all the senior starters, I had questions,” coach Gary Amos said. “Our leading goal scorer the last few years (J.T. Paterini) was all-WPIAL and the section player of the year as a senior, so I was worried about scoring. And we also lost our goalkeeper, who was a four-year starter. So that was goalkeeping and scoring — both ends were concerns. We've been very happy with the kids who have filled in there.”
The scoring slack has been picked up by seniors McCann and Levine, who have combined for more than 40 goals.
“They're our two-headed monster,” Jim Liermann said.
McCann has already matched Paterini's production on his own with 25 goals.
“(Levine) and I have good chemistry,” McCann said. “He just has a way of sending me the ball and setting me up, and I put them in the back of the net.”
Nick Liermann, Jim's brother, has seven shutouts and has a chance to break the school record.
What has helped the young goalie is the bevy of experience in front of him. The Bearcats have four senior fullbacks — two of whom are team captains and multiple-year starters.
Co-captain Chris Moyer has been out for two weeks due to injury, but figures to return in time for the playoffs. Chris Brandl and Jesse Martin are two other reliable senior starters at fullback, but it's three-year all-section performer Jim Liermann whom Amos calls “one of the best leaders I've had in my eight years here.”
Other senior starters are midfielders Adam Bell and Ian Zaccone. Sophomore Joe Gaso and freshman Chad Gurdish also start in the midfield.
Bentworth has clinched its second section championship. This is the fourth consecutive season the Bearcats have made the playoffs — but they have yet to win a playoff game.
“We have some big goals this year, and that, for sure, is one of them,” Jim Liermann said.
So, what are the other goals?
“WPIALs would be nice,” Liermann said. “A WPIAL championship.
“We all think that's something that's possible and not out of our reach.”
Chris Adamski is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Roaches troubling to Donora residents
- N. Belle Vernon man allegedly assaulted girlfriend, spit at cop
- Carroll pair to stand trial for check theft charges
- Charleroi deals with more road problems
- Carroll hires full-time police officer
- Rostraver garbage collection vote delayed
- The Valley Independent made major move to new home 48 years ago
- Belle Vernon Area brightens up a cloudy day