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Wave is Falcons’ final victim, 4-1

Smith Academy finished off an unbeaten Franklin County League girls’ soccer season with a 4-1 victory over Greenfield High School Tuesday afternoon in Greenfield.

The Falcons (16-2-0 overall, 12-0-0 FCL) unseated last year’s champs, Athol High School, this season with an unbeaten record in league play, outscoring opponents 48-4. Smith Academy jumped out to a 3-0 lead over Greenfield in the regular-season finale and the two teams traded second-half goals to complete the scoring. According to Greenfield coach Steve Lepore, the Falcons not only had a great season playing the game, but also showed class when doing so.

“The way that those girls played and their attitude on the field was just phenomenal,” Lepore began. “If they ran into someone, or knocked someone down, they would say sorry, or lend a hand. I’ve seen a lot of teams in my years as a coach, and they showed great sportsmanship.”

Ali Fitzgerald scored an unassisted goal in the 20th minute that set off a three-goal explosion in a four-minute span for the Falcons. Hannah Rickert netted a goal from Olivia Hanson in the 23rd minute, and Anna Gelotte finished off first-half scoring one minute later.

The Falcons upped the lead to 4-0 with an own-goal in the 14th minute of the second half, but the Green Wave got one goal back with seven minutes left when Mollie Sullivan scored on assists from Jess Westerman and Sabrina Sparda.

Brook Pashek needed to make just one save to earn the win. The Green Wave played with three goalies in the season finale. Westerman made five saves in the first half, while Allie Roe stopped three shots in 15 scoreless minutes of second-half play. Shauntel Ortiz finished up in net and made two saves in the final 25 minutes.

The Green Wave finished the season 1-14-2 overall, and while the wins may not have been there, Lepore said he noticed consistent improvement from a young, inexperienced team.

“A lot of young people got a chance to play this season,” the coach explained. “We had a lot of upperclassmen, but a lot of them were new to the game, so they’ve really only been playing three or four months. We were still a step behind in terms of thinking and awareness on the field. I was impressed with how well our defense was; it was the best defense we’ve had in years. But if the young kids on the team play over the winter and keep touching a soccer ball, we should see even more improvement next season.”

Boys’ matches

McCann Tech 4, FC Tech 1 — Chad Raimer scored three times Tuesday afternoon to lead McCann Technical High School to a 4-1 win over Franklin County Technical School in a Tri-County League North Division boys’ soccer game in Turners Falls.

The Hornets (8-7-0) scored twice in each half. Evan LeMire opened the scoring for the Hornets, and Raimer then scored the next three goals for the guests. Anthony Chaisson scored the lone goal for the hosts on an assist from Jared Streeter in the second half.

The Eagles end the season 1-16-0 overall. The team has played nearly every game this season with less than 11 field players, and first-year coach Joe Barrett said he has been pleased the way his players have responded to the adversity.

“The guys kept their heads,” he explained. “It’s not easy going into every game and knowing that you have no subs and that you’ll be playing down players the entire time. Our seniors were good role models and leaders for the younger kids. It’s a credit to the young kids for showing such maturity.”

Rhamsses Santiago-Diaz made 19 saves in the Eagles’ net. Chris Gajda stopped nine shots in the Hornets’ net.

Girls’ volleyball

Mahar 3, Athol 1 — Sabrina Silva registered 19 kills and six aces and Mahar Regional School recovered from a first-set loss to post an 18-25, 25-8, 25-17, 25-17 victory over Athol High School in an independent girls’ volleyball match Tuesday night in Athol.

Sam Pierson finished with 17 assists for Mahar (14-5), and Caitriona Cronin added 12 digs.

Julia Salmond led the Red Raiders (13-6) with nine kills, six blocks and 21 digs. Trisha Hazen added 17 digs and three kills, while Isabella Valcourt registered four blocks and two kills.

Both teams will find out their place in the WMass Division III tournament Thursday.

East Longmeadow 3, Turners 0 — Turners Falls High School closed out its regular-season schedule with a 25-15, 25-18, 25-10 loss to East Longmeadow High School in an independent girls’ volleyball match Tuesday in East Lonmgmeadow.

Tracy Welch led the Spartans with 13 assists and 11 digs. Julia Decker collected nine kills and six digs, while Jamie Mickiewicz registered nine kills.

Emilee Felton paced the Indians with six digs and an ace, while Shelby Lewis totaled four kills, two aces, two digs and one block.

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