Butler Boys roll past Central in playoff debut
Butler forward Jack Beneigh (29) heads a throw-in pass over Central Catholic defenders during the Golden Tornado's 4-0 WPIAL 4A boys soccer playoff win Tuesday night.
NATE BLACK/SPECIAL TO THE EAGLE
WEXFORD — The field wasn't actually tilted in Butler's favor, but it certainly seemed that way.
The Golden Tornado dominated play throughout — with senior forward Landon Mohney scoring three goals — as Butler's boys soccer team toppled Central Catholic 4-0 in Tuesday's WPIAL Class 4A first-round playoff on a damp and windy night at North Allegheny's Newman Stadium.
The Vikings (8-6-1) had scored just 20 goals in 14 games entering the contest.
“We watched film on them and had a couple of scouting reports,” said Butler coach Troy Mohney. “We felt confident about our chances, but in sports, anything can happen.”
Butler (14-5) will travel to Peters Township (14-1-1) for a quarterfinal Saturday at a time to be determined.
The first goal of Landon Mohney's hat trick came in the 16th minute after the Vikings were whistled for a foul in the goal box.
Mohney lined up for the penalty kick. Central goalkeeper Christopher Anderson guessed left and the ball sailed into the net to his right.
As dominant as Butler's play continued to be, the score was just 1-0 until the final minute of the first half.
The Tornado played the ball into Mohney, who put a move on a Viking defender, creating just enough separation for him to get off a laser shot from the right of Anderson, who could do nothing as the ball ended up in the left side of the net.
“We hit a lull in the middle of the first half,” said Coach Mohney. “We still had the better of the play, but had lost a lot of the speed we'd been playing with.
“That second goal right before halftime was huge.”
Butler was tagged with the No. 10 seed when the playoff brackets were released last week.
“We took it to heart,” said Tornado senior defender Carson Knight. “Finishing fourth in our section didn't help us, but we play in a really tough section.
“We came out with a tenacity tonight, even the guys off the bench.”
Section 1-4A also includes defending WPIAL and PIAA champion Seneca Valley, the top seed which Butler lost to twice this season by one goal both times.
Knight's throw-in deep in Central's end led to Butler's third goal in the 49th minute. Senior forward Jack Beneigh, with his back to teammate Aiden Wisda, was able to head the ball across the goalface to him. Wisda's score continued the long night for Anderson, who stopped 10 shots.
Landon Mohney capped the scoring four minutes later. He has now scored 20 goals in the last six games. His 35 goals this fall are just two shy of tying the single-season record at Butler of 37, held by Troy Mohney, his father.
“It's great playing with someone who is always a threat because we can work off him,” Knight said. “He always seems to be able to do something with the ball.”
Butler's Noah Wolford did not face a shot in net during the first half. Drew Knight denied a pair of shots in the second half.