The Pancyprians celebrate another cup title by winning the Rapaglia Cup. (FrontRowSoccer.com Photo)
The N.Y. Pancyprian Freedoms could not have asked for a better way to close out a memorable 2019.
Not only did the Cosmopolitan Soccer League club add three more trophies to its burgeoning collection, it set itself up for more glory and honors in the coming year.
In the spring, the Pancyprians won the CSL First Division and the Dr. Manning Cup. They added the Rapaglia Cup in September.
After a slow start in the league — the Freedoms started 0-1-1, losing an epic 6-5 battle to archrival N.Y. Greek Americans — they bounced back to take the CSL lead with a 7-1-2 mark and 23 points, leading by goal differential.
In 2020, the Pancyprians are on track for four more titles — the Manning Cup (Eastern New York State Soccer Association), Amateur Cup (U.S. Amateur Soccer Association), Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup (U.S. Soccer) and another CSL crown.
“We’ve really started getting into our stride as a team, which vindicates all of what we have been saying all year,” Pancyprians captain and left back Andreas Chronis said. “We just really needed to get our games in. We knew that we were going to find our strides with the players we have, probably the best 14-15 players in the league.
“I think we’re proving it to everyone now, even though we had the missteps at the beginning of the season, that we really are the best team. Our numbers don’t lie. We are in first place in the league. We’re in every cup except the Fricker, which we lost. So, everyone is very happy.”
The Pancyprians lost the Fricker Cup to CSL rival Lansdowne Bhoys in a shootout, but exacted revenge to win the Amateur Cup. The team also defeated another CSL side, Cedar Stars Academy in Open Cup qualifying. The Pancyprians, three-time Open Cup championships, secured a spot in next year’s competition with a 1-0 win at Brockton FC United in Everett, Mass. in a game that was called after 58th minutes due to brutal weather conditions — an unplayable field — Nov. 24. Charlie Ledula tallied the lone goal.
The CSL outdoor season and the cup competitions will resume in March.
The first round of the U.S. Open Cup is set for the weekend of March 24-25.
Sunday: Story No. 9