Recalling Medina’s first N-O soccer title

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 29 November 2020 at 8:30 am

Contributed Photo – Medina’s 1992 Niagara-Orleans League champion soccer team included, in front, Josh Lacy, Jon Barhite, Gerry Lewis and Andy Page. In the middle row are Tony Diaz, Yusef Abbasey, Roland Doktor, Aaron Vaughn and Darren Kwiatkowski. In the back row are Ron Brigham, Frank Battaglia, Andy Benz, Adam Kinne, Joe Foster, Tim McKeown, Derek Dutcher, Allan Anderson, Mark Underdown and Coach Steve O’Dea.

The Medina/Lyndonville boys soccer team enjoyed a very successful season this fall emerging as Section VI Class B1 co-champions after tying Tonawanda 2-2 in overtime in the tile contest.

That title recalls Medina’s first soccer championship when Coach Steve O’Dea’s Mustangs captured the Niagara-Orleans League crown in 1992.

Medina compiled a 9-1 N-O record that season to win the league title by two games over runner-up Akron (7-3).

A late season 7-1 win over Albion put a lock on the championship for Medina.  Allan Anderson, an exchange student who scored a team leading 25 goals on the season, netted four in the clinching win over the Purple Eagles.

Medina’s only league loss was a narrow 2-1 setback against Akron in the N-O finale. The Tigers avenged an earlier season 4-1 loss with that victory.

The Mustangs other N-O wins were 8-1 and 7-1 over Roy-Hart, 3-2 and 2-0 over Wilson, 4-1 and 4-0 over Starpoint and 4-1 in their first meeting with Albion.

Medina placed five players on the N-O All-League first team including Anderson at forward, Yusef Abbasey at midfield, Joe Foster and Derek Dutcher on defense and Ron Brigham in goal.

The Mustangs also had a quartet of second team All-League honorees including forwards Mark Underdown and Tim McKeown, midfielder Josh Lacy and defender Andy Benz.

McKeown had 9 goals on the season, Underdown 6 and Abbasey 4.

In would be some 22 years before the Mustangs would again claim the N-O crown. The combined Medina/Lyndonville team ended that drought by capturing the crown in 2014 and also again in 2019.