New Orleans Jesters lose playoff semifinal in nine goal thriller

Hattiesburg, MS.  The New Orleans Jesters lost 5-4 to Southern States SC tonight at The Oakes Training Center in the NPSL Gulf Coast Conference semifinal. The result eliminates New Orleans from the NPSL playoffs, Southern States advances to the Gulf Coast Conference Championship game where they will face Jacksonville Armada.


SSSC opened the scoring in the 27th minute then added a second ten minutes later with a speculative strike from the right side of the penalty area.


The Jesters pulled a goal back just before half time then SSSC made it 3-1 right after the break.


New Orleans scored a second in the 55th minute with clinical finish from midfielder Alex Blanche. 


SSSC added a fourth goal in the 76th minute but moments later New Orleans answered again, this time through forward Lucho Galizzi with a counter attack goal to make it 4-3. 


Southern States restored the two goal advantage with three minutes to play but then veteran New Orleans striker Tony Judice scored a fourth goal for the Jesters in the 90th minute to make it 5-4 and set up a grandstand finish to the match.


With seconds remaining the Jesters earned a corner kick and sent everyone forward including the goalkeeper Jourdan Schumacher but the scramble in front of goal resulted in a desperate defensive clearance and Southern States held on for the win.