A late first-half goal by Jason Plumhoff was all that the visiting Ocean City Nor'easters needed Wednesday, as they snapped the Bohemians' five-match unbeaten run in league play on a warm and humid evening at Paul Angelo Russo Stadium.
Baltimore nearly got on the board with their first shot on target barely two minutes into the match. Austin Martz's drive clanged off the crossbar, while the rebound fired in by Kingsley Onwuka was well parried by Ocean City netminder Eric Klenofsky.
In the 14th minute, Shawn McLaws sprinted down the left side for the Nor'easters, tapping a slow rolling shot towards the yawning net. The Bohs defense saw to it that the ball was cleared off the line just in the nick of time. Minutes later, Zoncher Dennis and Ian Hines-Ike both had chances to score from similar positions on the edge of the box, but both of them fired their shots over the bar.
A good link-up play in the 35th minute between Jason Plumhoff and McLaws nearly gave the visitors the opener, but McLaws' attempt could only find the side netting. A minute later, Plumhoff had another chance on goal from the right side, but Baltimore keeper Andrew Harris met the challenge, palming the shot away.
The breakthrough came two minutes before the interval, as Plumhoff found the edge of the box and fired a shot past Harris' right side, which clipped the far post and slowly rolled over the line.
Harris was threatened again five minutes after the restart, as Ambry Moss found himself with space in the Baltimore half. Two quick-fire shots were swept away by the legs of the Bohemians' keeper, keeping the one-goal deficit within reach.
Both sides made multiple substitutions in the second half, with some players certainly feeling the effects of the sticky conditions. David Witkoff, one of the halftime subs for Santino Quaranta's side, had a prime opportunity to score his first career goal for the Bohs after 62 minutes, but his 20-yard effort was directed right at the midsection of Klenofsky.
As the match entered stoppage time, the hosts had a couple more chances to snatch a point from their New Jersey guests. Babatunji Osifeso, played only four minutes in his Baltimore debut, but had a great chance to equalize late, as he turned near the edge of the box and fired a low shot, but Klenofsky was able to gather on his near post. Baltimore's last shot of the match fell to Austin Martz, but he was also denied a goal, sending his shot over the cursed crossbar.
Baltimore (4-3-2) remains in fourth place in the PDL Mid-Atlantic Division on 14 points, one behind Reading and Long Island, and six back of leaders Jersey Express. The Bohs play the third game of their four-game homestand Saturday against the Long Island Rough Riders.
Goals: OC – Jason Plumhoff (43')
Yellow Cards: OC – Matthew Taphorn (86'); BAL – Ryan Tuck (66')
Shots: OC – 16, BAL – 13
Saves: OC – 4, BAL – 6
Fouls: OC – 7, BAL – 14
Offsides: OC – 0, BAL – 0
Corners: OC – 6, BAL – 5