MHS senior Kerem Bulut (11) plays to the crowd and the bench after his second goal against Montclair Kimberley Academy on Saturday, Sept. 25. Bulut’s two goals were the difference for the Mounties in their 2-1 win.


The seedings and brackets for the 2021 Essex County Soccer Tournaments have been set, with both the boys and girls representing Montclair High School and Montclair Kimberley Academy landing in the upper parts of their respective brackets.

For the girls, MHS (4-2-2, 2-1-2 SEC-American) took the second seed in its bracket and had a bye for the preliminary round on Oct. 5. That was good for the Mounties, who were contending with nicks and scrapes and could use the rest.

Their first game of the tournament was in the first round at Fortunato Field on Oct. 6, where they faced No. 15 Cedar Grove, which beat 18 seed Orange 8-0 on Monday, Oct. 4. Results of Wednesday’s game came after press time. If they were victorious, the Mounties would make it to the quarterfinal round on Saturday, Oct. 9.

The MKA girls (4-2-1, 3-1-1 SEC-American) landed in the fifth seed on the opposite side of the bracket, which gave them a bye in the preliminary round. They faced 12 seed Caldwell on Monday, Oct. 4, at home in the first round, winning 2-0 on the strength of goals by Sofia Vinasco and Alia Rasheed. 

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The Cougars now face the winner of 13 seed Mount St. Dominic and 4 seed Newark Academy, which play on Wednesday, Oct. 6, with results after press time. The game will take place on Saturday, Oct. 9, but the location was not decided by press time. If Newark Academy won, it would host the game as the higher seed, whereas if Mount St. Dominic won MKA will be the higher remaining seed and host the game.

The Mounties and Cougars will next meet if they both make it to the finals on Saturday, Oct. 16. While the Mounties would be the higher seed, the game will be played in Belleville on a neutral field. The game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

Meanwhile, the boys could meet as soon as the quarterfinals.

The Mounties, fresh off a double-overtime tie with Seton Hall Prep, the overall second-ranked team in the state, landed the No. 4 seed and had byes through the play-in and preliminary rounds. 

Their first game is at Fortunato Field today, Oct. 7, against either No. 13 seeded Caldwell or  20 seeded Barringer, who play Tuesday, Oct. 5.

MKA was seeded 5th and, like MHS, had byes through the play-in and preliminary rounds.

The Cougars’ first tournament game is also today, Oct. 7, against No. 12 Verona, which defeated Orange 8-1 on Monday. As the higher seed, MKA is hosting that game.

If both Montclair teams win they will meet in the quarterfinals, on Saturday, Oct. 9. The Mounties would be the higher seed, so the game would be played at Fortunato Field.

If either team advances to the finals, it will play the game at Belleville before the girls game. Kickoff would be at 5 p.m.