2015 North Country Summer Soccer vs. Tug Hill Summer Soccer
All-Star Game and Maple Bucket Challenge


Tug Hill Summer Soccer (Left, darker jerseys): Standing: Josh Uribe (Gouverneur), Matt Damon (Upstate United), Abraham Serrano (Ft. Drum), Nate Kennedy (Gouverneur), Nick Augliano (Harrisville), Matt Waugh (Gouverneur)
Kneeling: Aaron Zehr (Upstate United), Tanner Wiley (Upstate United), David Paro (Harrisville), Ryan Teal (Team Northern), Aaron Zehr (Team Northern), Kody Rosales (Team Northern), Leo Lankford (Team Northern), Nick Matuszczak (Lowville Beller's)
Referees (Middle): Jeff James, Matt James, Corey Palmer
North Country Summer Soccer (right, lighter jerseys): Standing, left to right:: Brek Murray (Lisbon), Dylan Gruneisen (Colton), Gyle Dominy (Colton), Jake Herzog (Amp), Ryan Chauvin (Massena), Donnie Wilhelm (Lisbon), Nabeel Almuti (Amp), Lucas Brown (Amp), Devin Gruneisen (Colton)
Kneeling, left to right: Nate Goodell (Heuvelton), Jason Guernsey (Potsdam Cornerstone), Dylan Finley (Ogdensburg Pepsi), Evan Kassian (Massena), Zack Votra (Potsdam CJ's), Andrew Streeter (Heuvelton), Jordan Kendall (Potsdam Cornerstone), Tony Betrus (Potsdam CJ's), Al Davis (Massena)

In a continuation of the series that started in 2009, the Tug Hill Summer Soccer All-Stars brought a team to Clarkson University's Turf field on July 5, 2015 to face the North Country Summer Soccer team in the 7th annual Maple Bucket Challenge. Nick Matuszczak, coordinator of the Tug Hill league, was charged with improving the bucket, a responsibility given to the winner of the previous year's game, which Tug Hill won in Lowville 3-1.  He added handles to the sides, further enhancing the "franken-bucket" appeal.  In the previous year Tony Betrus, representing the NCSS league, added a racing horseshow, tilted slightly toward the North Country Summer Soccer teams. The horseshoe was worn by Grand Savanna, a fifth generation decendent of Secretariat. Previous additions include the painting of the players on the bucket, rivets, a hinged top, and the laminated maple base. The original bucket was created by local artist Dr. Edward Schneider, fomerly of SUNY Potsdam, and now at Ithaca College.

The game itself was a very well played and evenly contested game.  Tug Hill struck first five minutes into the game when Tanner Wiley (Upstate United) made a nice run from the left side to the middle, and then slid the ball from the top of the penalty box back to his left for an on-running Josh Uribe (Gouverneur). Uribe scored low into the right side of the net for the first goal of the game.. After a hard-fought 40 minutes, which saw great defensive efforts from both teams, including especially NCSS defdnders Donnie Wilhelm (Lisbon) and Gyle Dominy (Colton), and Tug HIll defenders Nate Kennedy (Gouverneur), and Abraham Serrano (Ft. Drum), North Country Summer Soccer got on the scoreboard   Tony Betrus (Potsdam CJ's) found Lucas Brown (Ogdensburg Amp) on a long cross-field pass. Brown took the ball down and hit a shot from a wide right-side angle that was saved by Tug Hill goalkeeper Matt Waugh (Gouverneur), only to have Devin Gruneisen (Colton) headethe rebound into an open net to tie the game.

Very early in the second half Tug Hill had a good chance when a shot was put just wide from the top of the box. Ten minutes into the second half Dylan Gruneisen sent a long through ball to the left side of the box for an on-running Betrus, who slid the ball back to his right past goalkeeper Waugh to Devin Gruneisen for an open net tap-in, putting NCSS up 2-1. Tug Hill responded by repositioning Nick Matuszczak (Lowville Beller's) into center midfield, where he helped increase the pressure from the visitors. After some good combination play with fellow midfielder Matt Damon (Upstate United), Tug Hill began to genearte some scoring chances, including a shot off the crossbar about mid-way through the half. With 12 minutes to go Aaron Zehr (Upsated United) beat Brek Murray (Lisbon) on the right side of the goal before sending a hard shot on goal from close range.  Al Davis (Massena) made a nice save, but Tanner Wiley put in the rebound to tie the game at 2-2. In the final 10 minutes NCSS upped the pressure, creating multiple chances.  Jason Guernsey (Potsdam Cornerstone) beat three players before sending a hard shot near post. Waugh made the save, with the ball partially crossing the goal line, but not all the way. Also in the last 10 minutes Devin Gruneisen nearly completed his hat trick twice, hitting the left post on one shot, and the right post on another.  Lucas Brown found himself free in the center of the box with about 5 minutes to go, and hit the underside of the crossbar.  Finally, with about 30 seconds to go NCSS took a short corner, and after a give-and-go with Evan Kassian (Massena), Betrus sent a cross in to an open Brown on the six yard box, but Brown, caught between putting it in with his head or his chest, missed the ball completely.

The game was tied 2-2 at the end of regulation, the first time this has happened in seven years. Matuszczak and Betrus conferred with the players, and it was agreed that two 10 minute sudden death overtime periods would be played, followed by penalty kicks, if needed.. With 2 minutes to go in the first overtime, Dyaln Finley (Ogdensburg Pepsi) found Betrus with a short pass from the right side of midfield.. Betrus then sent a cross-field pass to an open Murray, who made up for his earlier mistake by making a 40 yard run from his left back position up the middle of the field, finally slotting a soft pass to his left to Dylan Gruneisen. Gruneisen gathered himself and drove the ball low into the right side-netting for the winner.  Jordan Kendall (Potsdam Cornerstone) split goalkeeping duties with Davis, and the two of them combined for five saves.  Waugh finished with 5 saves for Tug Hill.

Final Stats:

1st Half
Josh Uribe from Tanner Wiley (Tug Hill) 5th minute
Devin Gruneisen from Lucas Brown (NCSS) 40th minute

2nd Half
Devin Gruneisen from Tony Betrus (NCSS) 55th minute
Tanner Wiley from Aaron Zehr (Tug Hill) 78th minute
Overtime Dylan Gruneisen from Brek Murray (NCSS) 98th minute

       
           
Standing, left to right: Tony Betrus (Potsdam CJ's), Donnie Wilhelm (Lisbon), Andrew Streeter (Heuvelton), Dylan Finley (Ogdensburg Pepsi), Jason Guernsey (Potsdam Cornerstone), Dylan Gruneisen (Colton), Nabeel Almuti (Amp),  Brek Murray (Hosmer's), Gyle Dominy (Colton)
Kneeling, left to right: Evan Kassian (Massena), Al Davis (Massena), Jordan Kendall (Potsdam Cornerstone), Devin Gruneisen (Colton), Lucas Brown (Amp), Ryan Chauvin (Massena), Nate Goodell (Heuvelton)

Winners of the Maple Bucket:
2009 Ogdensburg Pepsi over Lowvile Beller's 7-1 in Canton, NY
2010 Watertown F.C. over CKON 4-2 in Potsdam, NY
2011 Tug Hill Summer Soccer over North Country Summer Soccer 5-2 (with some NCSS players playing for Tug Hill) at SUNY Potsdam
2012 Tug Hill Summer Soccer over North Country Summer Soccer 8-1 in Lowville, NY
2013 North Country Summer Soccer over Tug Hill Summer Soccer 2-1 at SUNY Potsdam
2014 Tug Hill Summer Soccer over North Country Summer Soccer 3-1 in Lowville, NY
2015 North Country Summer Soccer over Tug Hill Summer Soccer 3-2 (OT) at Clarkson University