New England Soccer Today

Phantoms Prevail 2-1 Over Pioneers

Jordan Branco tried to steer his the Pioneers to victory at Ludlow Field on Friday, but the hosts fell short in a 2-1 loss to the Phantoms. (Photo: Western Mass Pioneers)

James Goodwin and Steve Palumbo helped the Seacoast United Phantoms overcome a halftime deficit to beat the Western Mass Pioneers 2-1 Friday night at Ludlow Stadium.

Alpha Dioubate put the Pioneers on the board in the 43rd minute, but goals from Goodwin (62′) and Palumbo (67′) within a five-minute span thwarted the hosts in their home opener.

The Pioneers held the ball length in the first half, but didn’t put one through until Dioubate pounced on a Ryan Malone rebound that squirted away from Phantoms keeper Colin O’Donnell two minutes from the interval.

But the Phantoms responded after the hour when Brad Hilton whipped in a corner kick that Goodwin tapped in at the near post to equalize it.

Terms didn’t stay level for long, however. Five minutes after Goodwin’s goal, Palumbo dribbled through traffic and fired away on keeper Anthony Occhianlini, who made the initial save. But the Phantom attacker followed up on the rebound and put it through for the game-winner.

With the win, the Phantoms (2-0-0, 6 points) remain undefeated on the nascent PDL season. They’ll kick off their home slate on Sunday for a game against CFC Azul at Portsmouth High School.

Meanwhile, the Pioneers (0-1-0, 0 points) return to the field on May 18 when they host Boston Victory for a Commonwealth clash at Ludlow Stadium.

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