By Official Florida FC

Port Orange Spruce Creek was unbeaten against everyone who wasn’t from Jacksonville this season. The Hawks overcame a halftime deficit on a cool night in the River City on Tuesday to defeat a dogged Bishop Kenny team 3-2 at J. Joseph Parete Field.

Bishop Kenny’s Joseph Jimenez opened the scoring in the 15th minute. The hosts had two golden chances to extend their lead, but didn’t do so. The better of the two chances arrived in the 25th minute when Spruce Creek keeper Parker Koch parried away a shot from 16 yards away.

Bishop Kenny (11-7-1) had a halftime advantage, but an understanding their lead was fraught. Spruce Creek (20-1-1) scored three consecutive goals to take control of the game. Spruce Creek forward Jadon Swartzlander scored a tap-in in the 52nd minute. Nine minutes later, Xavier Vega tried his luck from 35 yards and the ball squirted beneath the Bishop Kenny goalkeeper for the go-ahead goal. Victor Malo’s 63rd minute goal appeared to give Spruce Creek the insurance that it could beat a team from the River City.

Stanton College Prep beat the Hawks at the Mike Stone Invitational last month. Mandarin eliminated Spruce Creek in the 2021 FHSAA playoffs. Tuesday, Bishop Kenny couldn’t hand the visitors their third straight loss against a team from the River City.

Bishop Kenny forward Nathan Hawara scored a 68th minute goal to set up a grandstand finish. However, the Hawks, the No. 1 team in the FHSAA boys soccer rankings all season, han enough to withstand the late barrage.

Here are photos from the match.

Spruce Creek at Bishop Kenny boys soccer

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