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Tough start for Junior Lone Star

Photo: Courtesy of Junior Lone Star

The weekend of May 18-20 will be one to forget for the Stars as they started their inaugural season in the National Premier Soccer League with two successive losses.

FC Sonic 2–0 Junior Lone Star

In their league opener on Friday, May 18th, the Stars traveled to Bethlehem, PA where they lost 0-2 to FC Sonic. The Sonics made their intentions known as early as the fifth minute when they tested goalkeeper Prince Monyan.

Five minutes later, the Stars’ top scorer, Jerome Pour, sustained an ankle injury and he had to be replaced by midfielder Fatoma Turay. With that forced substitution, Coach Bobby Ali introduced a 4–4–2 system instead of the 4–3–3 from the start.

Aboubacar Dosso, Amadu Fofana, Amadou Sheriff, and Mohammed Mayah were playing flat four. Fane Ayouba, Fatoma Turay (in for Jerome Pour), Justin Wright, and James Geayea in midfield. Mohamed Camara and Dan Doe were the two forwards up top.

Another forced substitution for the Stars soon followed when defender Aboubacar Dosso had to be taken off due to a knee injury. He was replaced by Aba Zoegar.

With the Stars losing a little rhythm due to the substitutions, the Sonics capitalized and went ahead in the 34th minute through none other than the 2011 NPSL All-Star Codi Antonini. An inviting cross from the right was completely missed by goalkeeper Prince Monyan and Antonini was waiting on the far post to head the ball into the net.

That Sonic’s goal was a wake-up call for the Stars as they searched for an equalizer. First, forward Dan Doe had a shot off target, and then fellow strike partner Mohamed Camara saw his tamed shot fizzled wide.

Not defending their slender lead, the Sonics scored another beautiful goal in the 42nd minute. Mustaf, who had just entered the game as a substitute, found enough space on the touchline to dribble past two defenders before passing the ball across goal for a simple tap-in for Travis Cantrell.

The score remained 0-2 to the Sonics going into the second half, where the Stars had majority of the possession but none could be converted into a goal.

With Fatoma Turay bossing the midfield and forwards Mohamed Camara and Lawrence Brown making diagonal runs, the game began to shift in the Stars’ favor.

Looking to capitalize on the mounting pressure, Stars coach Bobby Ali made three substitutions to force a breakthrough. First, he introduced another forward, Menuh Wiah, for midfielder Justin Wright. Then he brought on midfielder Harris Mulbah for Dan Doe in the 72nd minute and lastly Constance Zoegar for Fane Ayouba in the 80th minute.

Those substitutions almost paid off when Turay sent a nice through ball to forward Wiah, who missed completely. The Sonics, meanwhile, came very close to scoring another goal from a counter-attack but Monyan had the post to thank as the ball hit the crossbar.

FC Sonic were able to hold on to for 2-0 home win over the Stars. Goalkeeper Prince Monyan and midfielder Fatoma Turay were impressive in the match.

 AC Crusaders 4–3 Junior Lone Star 3

Hurting from Friday’s defeat, the Stars were again on the road for another league against AC Crusaders on Sunday where they were involved in a seven-goal thriller.

Coach Ali made few changes to the side that lost on Friday. Goalkeeper Prince Monyan, who had been impressive in goal, retained his place between the posts as did Amadu Fofana in defense. Defenders Anthony Dunor and Amos Daniel were called into the squad to replace Amadou Sheriff and Mohammed Mayah. Midfielder James Geayea, who was impressive in defense in Friday’s game, also got the start. Fatoma Turay started in midfield after coming on as a substitute in Friday’s game. He was joined in the midfield by Justin Wright, Fane Ayouba and Mitchell Torh who missed Friday’s match. Un top, Dan Doe again started while forward Menuh Wiah replaced Jerome Pour in the starting lineup.

As early as the 15th minute, the Stars found themselves trailing after an error from goalkeeper Monyan.

The Stars, however, responded in the 20th minute when forward Dan Doe was allowed enough space on the right to shoot the ball over the Crusaders goalkeeper to tie the game 1-1.

The Stars then took the lead in the 39th minute when Menuh Wiah somehow managed to control the ball on his chest and sent an unstoppable volley into goal to put the Stars 2-1.

If the Stars thought things would get better in the second half, things rather turned worse when they conceded two goals in the space of one minute. First, Adam Sternberger equalized for AC Crusaders in the 65th minute. Thirty seconds later, Jeremy Ortiz capitalized on the hesitancy of defender Amos Daniel to put the Crusaders ahead 3-2.

The Crusaders had that lead for exactly 15 minutes before the Stars were able to equalize in the 81st minute through a beauty of a shot from midfielder Turay. Picking up the ball from the midfield, he was able to dribble his way past two defenders to send a curling shot in the upper right corner of the post to tie the game and send the Stars’ traveling supporters—and even the home fans—into ecstasy.

However, a lack of concentration allowed AC Crusaders to score another goal in stoppage time through Chad Stevens to give the Stars the second successive defeat of their inaugural season.

The Stars will return on the road for two away games: to Pocono Snow on Saturday, May 26th and Jersey City Eagles on Tuesday, May 29th.

The Stars’ first home game is scheduled for Sunday, June 3rd against Buxmont Torch at the Northeast High School’s Charles Martin Memorial Stadium.


  1. I love that you’re covering this! I’ll be looking forward to reading about their first win.

  2. Thanks Jim!!! We hope to get back on track on Saturday.

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