WOODBRIDGE -- Whenever the Greenwich High boys soccer team has needed a lift this season it has looked toward co-captain Pieter Zenner to provide it.

So, when the Cardinals needed their biggest lift of the season, Zenner was there to deliver one of the biggest wins in program history.

The senior scored two goals and assisted on a third as the No. 7 Cardinals knocked off No. 2 Amity 3-1 in the Class LL quarterfinals Wednesday.

Greenwich will now face No. 3 Fairfield Prep in the semifinals on Friday at 4 p.m. at New Canaan's Dunning Stadium.

For Zenner and the rest of the Cardinals advancing to the semifinals is an accomplishment they only dreamed of when the season began.

"It feels amazing," Zenner said. "We haven't been past the second round in 12 years, so, it feels great."

Amity applied pressure to the Cardinals early on, earning four corner kicks in the first 15 minutes, but the Spartans were turned back by the Greenwich defense every time.

Amity coach Mike Marchitto thought his team played the Cardinals evenly, but was hurt by three mistakes that Greenwich (16-2-2) capitalized on.

"Three plays. I think we had 80 percent of this game but we just didn't finish," Marchitto said. "We missed our opportunities. I have never been more proud of a team."

The first of those plays came with 3:10 to play in the first half. Will Gittings played a ball to Mateo Gowland that Gowland sent through to a streaking Zenner who beat the keeper to make it 1-0 going into the half.

Amity began the second half in much the same way it began the first, taking the play to the Cardinals, but the Spartans were unable to score the equalizer.

The best chance for Amity came with 20 minutes to play when Dean Schwartz headed a shot on goal that Cardinals keeper Emmett Clarke made a diving save on.

It was one of three acrobatic saves Clarke made in the second half.

"He pulled off a fantastic save there," Greenwich coach Kurt Putnam said. "I thought he did what he needed to do. He was big today in picking up a lot of the loose balls inside the box and getting his defense out of the way calling for that stuff."

As Amity fought for the equalizer, the Cardinals were able to create offensive chances. With 14:30 left Zenner scored perhaps the prettiest goal in the state this season, drilling a bouncing pass from Gowland into the upper left corner of the net, setting off a wild celebration by the Cardinals near the corner flag.

"We will not ever see a better shot than that at any level, for god's sake," Putnam said.

"I don't think any goal keeper would ever get close to saving that. That is one of those he will remember for a long time because he hit that as clean as you can hit a ball. When that left his foot everyone was amazed and I hope they have it on video because his (college) coach will love seeing that."

Moments later Gowland scored off a rebound of a Zenner shot to make it 3-0.

Amity got a goal from Ian O'Brien-Cannon with 8:30 left but could not get any closer.

Greenwich 3, Amity 1


AMITY 0 1--1

Scoring: G--Pieter Zenner 2g, 1a; Mateo Gowland 1g, 2a; Will Gittings 1a; A--Ian O'Brien-Cannon 1g; Jeremy Conn 1a. Goalies: G--Emmett Clarke 5 saves; A--Griffin Volta 6 saves

Records: G 16-2-2; A 15-2-2