4 games remaining NPSL playoff contention

Season summary for the Torch FC men’s team.

After loosing 4-1 against Junior Lone Star in Torch FC’s season opener, the Torch men rebounded in a 4 game winning streak before losing in the 88′ minute to Hershey FC on June 17th at Pennridge High School. The loss was Torch FC’s first home loss in 2017 and placed Torch FC in fourth place behind Clarkstown Eagles (10pts) in the Keystone Conference standings.

On Wednesday, June 21st, Torch FC (10pts) will battle for three more points in a must win match against a strong Junior Lone Start (9pts) that sits in 5th place in the standings behind the Torch FC.

“This will be a tough match for us tonight”, said assistant coach Fernando DeSouza. “With the loss of our attacking midfielder David Shafer to the roster and coming off a last minute goal by Hershey last weekend is taking a toll on the team. But I am confident in character of our guys and that will be displayed on the field in tonights match”

After tonights game, Torch FC will have to secure another 3 points this weekend from the number 1 team in the standing West Chester United Predators (16pts). This match will be Torch FC men’s team last home game of the 2017 season and will take place at Pennridge High School.

Torch FC will be finishing off the 2017 season with two away games at Electric City Scranton and New Jersey Copa in the month of July.




Injury Report: David Shafer out with severe ankle injury


David Shafer – Attacking Midfield – Torch FC – Photo by John / Pennridge Stadium

Torch FC today announced the disappointing departure of David Shafer after suffering a season ending injury during practice on June 15th.

Shafer scored three goals and tallied two assists in four games played in 2017. He is a strong attacking midfielder with professional qualities and strengths. Torch FC without Shafer is 0-1-1 with one loss and one tie. Shafer’s game presence will be missed in the next 4 remaining matches of the 2017 season.

Assistant Coach Fernando DeSouza had some words of encouragement to say, “David is a great athlete and he will be back stronger and more determined. He is still young at only 21  and has many years to show the soccer world his best.”

The Torch Sports Ministry organization wants to wish David a speedy recovery and success in all his future endeavors.





3 game winning goals for Pedro Sousa Torch FC to defeat Clarkstown Eagles

Pedro Sousa scored the winning goal in a 2-1 win for Buxmont Torch. Man of the Match goal keeper Matt Palmer had a impressive performance to only allow 1 goal and 7 saves.

The Clarkstown Eagles traveled to Perkasie, PA with their top select team and showed much better side and play than the home side. Eagles controlled the game for the first 70 minutes, moving the ball effortlessly and scoring 2 times only to be waived off by officials for offsides. The Eagles defended much of the game only allowing less then a handful of shots by the front line of the Torch.

Man of the Match – Matt Palmer – Photo by Matt Ralph

Only one of the Shafer brothers made the game day roster on Saturday evening for the Torch. Phil Shafer for the second time this season missed a game for due to health reasons. David Shafer showed signs of an ankle injury that occurred late into the match against Greater Binghamton and had to be substituted in the 64′ minute. Also due to injuries Khalil Karl did not play this match.

The first waive of subs was made by coach Sparling at the start of the second-half. A total of 6 substitution came in giving the home side a fresh look on the field. Tyler Smith, Pedro Sousa, Nick Marculo, Cody Gangaware, Jake Rudloff and Kenny Varady

The substitutions created a more possession style game for the home side and allowed Joshua Coupar to move into a center midfield position. Clarkstown did not have an answer and Torch pushed through with the first goal of the second half in the 70′ minute by left-mid Cody Gangaware. The goal did not stop Clarkstown Eagles strong presence in the field attacking wide and creating more shots on goal. Eagles broke through the defense for a goal only to be waived off by another offsides call.

The game picked up in the last 15 minutes for the Torch side controlling much of the midfield playing a more controlled soccer then the prior 75 minutes. Nick Marculo and Josh Coupar did much of the work in the middle when a through ball from Kenny Varady ended up in a collision by the Eagles goal keeper and defender that left Pedro Sousa all alone to walk into the six and score the game winning goal.

Take away: Clarkstown Eagles were the better side and the better team today with impressive starting eleven. The Buxmont Torch have a deep enough bench and grit to take down the top teams in the division. Technically, Clarkstown controlled much of the possession and created more chances to score.

Starters: Matt Palmer, Joshua Coupar, Dominic Powers, Jeremiah Mateola, Mitchell Robinson, David Shafer, Will Woodfin, Phil Hagerty, Thiago Dos Santos, Cody Boerema, Matthew Giudice

Substitutions: Cody Gangaware, Tyler Smith, Nick Marculo, Kenny Varady, Pedro Sousa

Man of the Match: Goal Keeper Matt Palmer


Game Replay


Torch FC Men finish the week with 4 points and the first shutout of the season

A hard fought match ends in a draw in West Chester and 1 point for both teams

Photo credit Matt Ralph

Torch FC traveled to West Chester, PA on May 31st to face the undefeated West Chester United  on a beautiful Wednesday evening game that proved to be a defensive feat for both sides.

The play on the field was neck and neck till the final whistle. Both teams had scoring opportunities, starting off with much of the possession leaning towards West Chester abusing the space on the right side flank and forcing Torch FC to make a tactical change from the bench when Will Woodfin replaced defensive right-back Kenny Varady.

After the change, Torch FC’s defense came up big with Matthew Guidice, Joshua Coupar, Will Woodfin and Jeremiah Mateola not giving the wingers much space to make penetrations into the box eliminating the Predators shots on goal.

Early in the second half a cross from the left side ended up next to Thiago Dos Santos where he volleyed the ball into the left corner of the goal. West Chester’s goal keeper come up big with a dive to his right to hit the ball wide for a corner kick.

Torch FC showed their strengths in the transition game from the back to the outside wingers. The attack finally broke into the defense in the second-half when Phil Hagerty moved up into attacking-mid causing trouble defense line into the final third to come away with goal scoring opportunities. West Chester had a disciplined back line and minimized mistakes and did not give much space to work the ball.

Late in the 80th minute,  Torch FC thought they had a penalty opportunity in the box,  the non call came from a rough challenge on top of the 18 where Dos Santos ended up on the ground with many of the Torch players pleading for a call from the referee.

Matt Palmer, Torch FC goal keeper and Man of the Match nominee came up with an amazing sliding save late in the game, cutting off a scoring opportunity from West Chester that end up with a scrappy high cross over the back post.

The next match for  the Torch FC men’s team will be on Sunday 4:30PM at Pennridge High School in Perkasie, PA.  The next 4 games will all be at home and please visit our schedule  www.torchsportsministry.org for more information.

Man of the Match: GK Matt Palmer, Big saves down the stretch for a 0-0 draw

Goal: 0

Starting Lineup: #0 Matt Palmer, #3 Joshua Coupar, #20 Kenny Varady (46′ #5 Will Woodfin), #10 Matt Giudice, #25 Pedro Sousa (66′ #15Nick Marculo),  #11 Thiago Dos Santos, #21 Jeremiah Mateola, #17 Phillip Hagerty, #2 Dominic Powers, #2 Khalil Karl, #8 Mitchell Robinson (14’#15 Cody Boerema , 69′ Cody Gangaware)

Subs: #15 Cody Boerema, #15Nick Marculo, #4 Cody Gangaware, #5 Will Woodfin

Torch FC earns 3 points on the road and first victory of the 2017 season

Torch FC (1,1) wins important game of the season in a 3-2 showdown at Hershey High School Stadium. Torch FC came out strong from the start using the speed of the wingers Cody Boerema and Thiago Dos Santos. Dos Santos was able to easily run past Hershey FC (0,2) defense only to be fouled inside 18 by a defender trying to stop his chances of scoring. With only two minutes passed, Torch FC had an opportunity to go 1 nill when Phil Hagerty took the penalty shot only to be saved by Hershey keeper.

In the 6th minute, Thiago again took a chance at the defense from the right side and was able to cross a beautiful ground ball across the goal to Phil Shafer, who scored his first goal of the season against his former team at his first career appearance for Torch FC.

The two Shafer brothers, Phil and David, had great chemistry and were able to control much of the ball for Torch FC in the middle and final third. David Shafer found a whole in the middle of the defense to dribble his way past the defenders and beat the goal keeper to score his first goal of the season in the 42nd minute of the game.

With the substitution of striker #7 Phil Shafer late in the 72nd minute, Pedro Sousa brought some energy and scoring opportunities from the bench.  After 7 minutes of play a cross by Man of the Match nominee David Shafer found the head of Pedro Sousa for his first goal of the season.

Josh Coupar, a center back for Torch FC, said, “It felt great to get a first win in a Torch shirt. It wasn’t the perfect performance but I think we produced some good soccer that we can build upon in the games to come.”

Coach Sparling said after the game “Hershey is a good team. They are strong, fast and very skilled, so I was very happy with how we held up under their attack. Jumping out to a 2-0 advantage on a fantastic cross from Thiago dos Santos to Phil Shafer, and then a scrappy unassisted goal by David Shafer, could have taken Hershey out of the game. But it didn’t and they fought back to tie the game up 2-2. This is where I believe the character of our team helped us not allow their momentum to swing the game in their favor, and we regained the lead on a pass from David Shafer to Pedro Sousa. The win was great especially after our sloppy performance at Junior Lone Star. What excites me most is that we’ve only been together for 1 week so we are just gaining our footing as a team. I believe we are just going to keep getting stronger. Additionally, we squandered some scoring opportunities including a penalty kick, so the score could have been very different, but then again, so did Hershey. All in all it was a great game and I am glad to have come away with the ‘W’.”

Torch FC has 1 loss and 1 victory so far this season. The next game will be against (2,0) West Chester United Soccer Club, and we expect to be a tough match for us but we expect great soccer to watch from both sides.

Man of the Match Nominations: David Shafer, Midfield, 1 Goal, 1 Assist. David Shafer worked hard and played 92 min.

Starting line up: #0 Matt Palmer, #3 Joshua Coupar, #5 Will Woodfin (66′ #28 Tyler Smith), #10 Matt Giudice, #7 Phil Shafer (#25 Pedro Sena), #16 David Fisher, #11 Thiago Dos Santos, #21 Jeremiah Mateola (#20 Kenny Varady), #15 Cody Boerema, #17 Phillip Hagerty(80′ #32 Nick Marculo), #2 Dominic Powers

Subs: #28 Tyler Smith, #25 Pedro Sousa, #20 Kenny Varady, #32 Nick Marculo

Goals: Philip Shafer 6′,  David Shafer 42′,  Pedro Sousa 79′



David Shafer signs with Torch FC

​Torch Sports Ministry announced Friday the signing of forward David Shafer to an NPSL contract with BuxMont Torch FC. Shafer will play alongside his brother Phil Shafer, who signed with the Torch FC just one month ago.

Shafer who is a native of Orlando, Florida was named 2014 Florida Soccer Player of the Year with 49 goals and 16 assists as a senior in High School.David Shafer attended St. Francis College in Brooklyn, New York, where he played as a freshman. Shafer helped St. Francis win their conference championship and played in the NCAA tournament.

In 2016, Shafer played 6 games for Hershey FC in the Keystone conference of the NPSL, and finished with one goal and four assists. Shafer also spent most of the 2016 season training with the Harrisburg City Islanders and Harrisburg Heat in the offseason.

“I am really happy to have David join his brother, Phil, for the 2017 season. David will raise the offensive bar on outside while bringing a great work ethic that will help solidify the high pressure defense that Torch is known for” Head Coach, Rich Sparling.


Philip Shafer Welcome 2017 BuxMont Torch FC

Hershey FC standout signs with Northeast rival

Torch Sports Ministry announced Friday the signing of forward Philip Shafer to an NPSL contract with BuxMont Torch FC. Shafer becomes the first player of 2017 season to sign with the club.

“I was really moved by your team’s prayer and message after the game between Torch FC and Hershey FC” said Philip Shafer. “And being a born-again believer myself I knew from that moment I wanted to be a part of your organization in the future.”

Shafer who is a native of Orlando, Florida played club with FC America and Florida Rush (Orlando City Academy). Shafer finished his High School career at Bishop Moore Catholic as a captain with with 34 goals and 31 assists. Shafer was a four year varsity letterwinner and was All-Central Florida first team Junior and Senior years. Shafer played at Saint Francis College in New York (Division I) as a central attacking midfielder and forward.  His Junior year he was second in both scoring and assists.

In 2016 Shafer played 6 games for Hershey FC in the Keystone conference. He lead the team in both goals and assists with a total of 11 points as a striker and central attacking midfield.

“We’re excited to have him play for the Torch, his obvious love for Christ is evident in the way he carries himself,”  said BuxMont Torch coach Rich Sparling. “He also will provide a strong target up top for the team, something that we haven’t had since the days of Sachem Wilson.”

Shafer is a very big player at 6’5″ and has a great ability in the air finishing crosses with headers.  While playing for Hershey FC Shafer’s unselfish style and work ethic allowed him to roam between the midfield and defense to receive the ball, switch play, and create chances to score.

Best qualities:  Aerial ability, first touch, passing/switching play, running into space, and finding pockets behind midfielders, and finishing crosses.

For more information on new signees, contact Fernando DeSouza, Marketing and Media Relations at (610) 572-3922 or fernbdesouza@gmail.com.


BuxMont Torch FC men’s team play in the pro/am National Premier Soccer League which is the 4th tier of USA men’s soccer. Home games are played at Pennridge High School Stadium in Perkasie, PA and has a capacity of 2,000 spectators. Players are encouraged to use the platform of sports to share about their faith after matches and summer soccer camps.


2017 Schedule Release

Torch Sports Ministry announced Saturday, March 11th the release of the 2017 schedules. Torch FC men’s team will open up the season by visiting Junior Lone Star on Saturday May 20th, at 4PM. The away game will be played at Bonner Prendergast Catholic High School, 403 N Lansdowne Ave, Drexel Hill, PA. The following month, Torch FC Men’s team will play 5 home games, and fans will be treated with back-to-back games. This year three doubleheaders will be played at Penn Ridge High School.

Torch FC home opener on Sunday, June 4th.

Women’s: Empire CNY, Sunday, 2:00PM

Men: GBFC, Sunday, 4:30PM

Doubleheader Saturday, June 17th

Women’s: Lehigh Valley Tempest, Saturday, 3:00PM

Men: Hershey FC, Saturday, 6:00PM

Doubleheader Sunday, June 25th

Women’s: Hershey FC, Sunday 3:00PM

Men: West Chester, Sunday, 6:00PM

Men’s Schedule


Women’s Schedule

BuxMont Torch FC announces tryouts on April 22

BuxMont Torch FC announced in January that the club will be holding NPSL and WPSL tryouts on Saturday April 22 at Pennridge High School stadium, 1228 N. Fifth Street, Perkasie, PA, starting at 11:30 a.m. BuxMont Torch FC head coach Rich Sparling will be joined by Torch Sports Ministry staff and coaches. The tryout will also be opened to the media and public.

The tryout will feature NPSL & WPSL pace small-sided drills, a free lunch, scrimmages and instructions about final rosters spots. This event registration fee will be $50 and will help cover Under Armour long sleeved tee, secondary health insurance and administration fees.

All interested players must register at www.buxmonthtorch.com/player-application by March 31st to reserve your t-shirt size. Along with registration, all participants will have to check-in with staff on the day of the event beginning at 11:30 a.m.

Select roster spots will be offered to players to join the BuxMont Torch FC.

About BuxMont Torch FC

BuxMont Torch FC men’s team play in the National Premier Soccer League which is ProAm and is the 4th tier of USA men’s soccer. The women compete in the Women’s Premier Soccer League which also is ProAm and is the 2nd tier of USA women’s soccer.

Home games are played at Pennridge High School Stadium in Perkasie, PA that has a capacity of 2,000 spectators. Players are encouraged to use the platform of sports to share about their faith after matches and summer soccer camps.

Torch Sports Ministry is a ministry that was established during the summer of 2009 which utilizes sport as a means to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to disciple and train sports ministers. We are a ministry of CrossWorld and partners with Push the Rock and are located in Upper Bucks-Montgomery-Lehigh Counties, PA.