The opposing team pulled up about 7:05 p.m. - barely making it on time for a 7:30 p.m. start.
Haddon Township was already in the middle of a warm-up that looked militaristic compared with the scramble on the other end of the field.
The Hawks looked sharp, precise, and organized. It was a classic example of practice dictating performance.
When the game finally started just a few minutes late, the Hawks pounded Asbury Park for 80 minutes Tuesday night at Haddonfield in a 5-0 victory in the Group 1 boys' soccer state semifinals.
The Hawks will play Verona for the state championship at 10 a.m. Saturday at Kean University.
"We talked about it before the game, we wanted to control the tempo," said Haddon Township coach Jim Bonder. "And that's one of the things I'm most pleased with in this game - we never lacked at all in that aspect of the game."
The win continued a dominant postseason stretch for Haddon Township in which it outscored opponents 16-1 en route to its fourth South Jersey title since 2011.
The Hawks last played in the state final in 2014, suffering a 4-0 loss to Harrison, one of the best teams in the state.
"I remember getting slaughtered in that game," said senior Jeb Howely, one of a handful of current Hawks who played meaningful roles on that team. "We've been talking about getting back to the state finals ever since. I think we're much more levelheaded now. We may not have as much talent as we did two years ago, but we work so much harder."
Tuesday night was never in question.
Howley - who had two goals and brilliant assist - ripped a ball that hit the crossbar in the first minute. It was classic foreshadowing.
The game could have easily been 5-0 in the first 15 minutes if it wasn't for the iron rods surrounding the nets.
Goalie Joey Johnson performed valiantly for Asbury Park (18-4-1), turning away numerous quality chances. Meanwhile, Hawks goalie Kieran Burns could have curled up and taken a nap if he wanted to - he was virtually a spectator until the final few minutes.
Haddon Township (19-3-1) was too strong and too organized to be stopped.
Howely netted his first goal with 22 minutes left in the first half, tapping in a corner kick from Michael Reece.
In between several other close calls, Howley struck again with 17:05 left in the half, looping a ball from close distance up and over the keeper's shoulder.
The second half was more of the same. With 32 minutes left Howley threaded the needle, sliding a cross to Griffin Goldstein, who deposited the third goal of the game from 12 yards out. Dennis Noon and Spencer Gaylert added late goals to put the final exclamation points on a convincing win.
"In the second half, we knew we wanted to keep the tempo high," Bonder said. "We didn't want to let them back into it.
"I was just really pleased with our effort."
Asbury Park 0 0 - 0
Haddon Township 2 3 - 5
Goals: Jeb Howley 2, Dennis Noon, Griffin Goldstein, Spencer Gaylert.