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July 28, 2012
Madison holds off Bay Area for third place

SAN DIEGO---The Madison 56ers held off the hard-charging Bay Area Ambassadors to capture third place in the National Premier Soccer League Championship series with a 3-2 win at Del Norte High School Saturday night.

Madison jumped out to a 2-0 lead midway through the first half. Derek Pitts gave the 56ers the lead in the 20th minute, getting a ball in the penalty area for an easy finish past Bay Area goalkeeper Derek Leslie.

Three minutes later, the Madison side, losers to FC Sonic Lehigh Valley on Friday night, doubled the lead. NPSL Player of the Year Carlos McCrary made a brilliant run down the right side before cutting into the penalty area and slotting the ball to Jed Holbein for the first of his two goals.

As they did in Friday night’s 3-2 loss to Chattanooga FC, Bay Area pushed unrelentingly for a comeback. Francisco Lopes scored on a header in the 40th minute, after a corner kick was played into the penalty area.

Five minutes into the second half, Madison again extended their lead to two goals when Holbein drilled an 18-yard shot from the top of the penalty area.

Undaunted, the black-clad Ambassadors pulled another one back in the 57th minute, when Nick Cashmere made an overlapping run down the left side of the field and slotted the ball past 56ers goalkeeper Max Jentsch.

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