Athol shocks Hopkins
Athol High School made a major statement in the Schmid Division on Wednesday.
The Red Raiders managed to slow down what had been an early season juggernaut in Hopkins Academy, handing the Golden Hawks their first loss of the season with a 1-0 boys’ soccer victory at O’Brien Field in Athol.
Hopkins entered the game 5-0-0 on the season and had outscored Schmid opponents 13-1 in three games played. Athol, which came into the game 2-1-0 on the season, found the winning formula, as it’s five-man rotation of defenders managed to keep a keen eye on Hopkins offensive star Paul Delamey, and limited the Golden Hawks to just seven shots in the game.
“I had them as the most potent offense in the league,” Athol coach Dave King said. “They’ve probably been averaged three or four goals a game. So I’m proud of the guys in the back. Starting with goalie Jamie Posk and going out to Kyle White and Mike Campos in the middle, and Zack Dodge, Nelson Leadbetter and Brandon Barilone rotating on the outside. They did a tremendous job of being aware of where Paul Delamey was. They didnt’ sit back, but just had tremendous awareness of where he was and they were able to turn a clean sheet.”
The game remained scoreless until Athol was able to break through with 12 minutes remaining. Dodge played a ball forward to Tanner Pavilionis who carried to the top of the 18-yard box and went to fire a shot toward the Hopkins goal. The Athol forward was fouled just outside the top of the box as he attempted the shot from just inside the left post. That set up a direct kick from 19 yards out and Brad Bousquet lined up and fired a shot to the top right corner, just past the diving hand of Hopkins goalie Ben Pitta.
Pitta finished with three saves in the loss, while Posk stopped all four shots he faced to register the shutout. The win, which helps Athol kick off a six-game stretch that sees them play a number of tough opponents, could also serve as a confidence builder according to King.
“We made a formation change at the beginning of the year and more than anything, this will allow our guys to believe in that formation and give us confidence moving forward,” the coach explained. “Unless you get results with changes you make, it can be tough for guys to believe in them. I think today the guys walked off the field believing more in themselves and our system than they did when they walked on it.”
Athol hosts Hampshire Regional High School Friday night at 7.
Sabis 3, Frontier 0 — Frontier Regional School travelled to Schmid Division Rival Sabis International Charter School in Springfield Wednesday, with Sabis taking a 3-0 win in a match that felt much closer.
“It was a frustrating afternoon,” said Frontier coach Dale Totman. “The teams played fairly even, and we just didn’t capitalize on our opportunities.”
After a scoreless first half, Sabis struck quickly in the second, with Alon Chappell scoring in the 43rd minute on a feed from Andrew Berthiaume. Three minutes later, Berthiaume made it 2-0 with an unassisted a goal of his own. In the 70th minute Sabis rounded out the scoring with Chappell putting his second of the day in the back of the net, this time unassisted.
The Red Hawks outshot the Bulldogs 14-12, but were stymied by goalie Shayne Audet, who recorded seven saves. Dylan Husted gathered in five for the Hawks.
Pioneer 1, Mohawk 0 — In a McGrath North Division boy’s soccer contest, Pioneer Valley Regional School defeated Mohawk Trail Regional High School 1- 0 Wednesday in Northfield.
The lone goal of the match came in the 9th minute when Phil Kang took a corner kick and passed to Tim Kang who set up Jeremy Temple, who headed the ball into the net.
Pioneer took 13 shots to Mohawk’s 3. Goalie Brian Aja had two saves for the Panthers, while counterpart Josh Taylor registered 11 for the Warriors.
Mahar 2, Turners Falls 1 — Tyler Robideau scored both goals for Mahar Regional high School, one from Jose Rivera at the 29 minute mark and one unassisted with 26 minutes left in the contest to lead the Senators to a 2-1 win over Turners Falls High School under the lights at the Bordeau Fields Complex in Turners Falls Wednesday night.
Liam Ellis netted a second half goal for the Indians, with an assist from Alex Gheorghita, and Turners goalie Zachary Demars recorded 18 saves.
Mahar had 28 shots to the Indians’ 20, and netminder Matt Simmington had eight saves for the Senators.
Pioneer 1, Turners Falls 0 — In a Franklin County League showdown, Pioneer Valley Regional School beat Turners Falls High School at the Bordeau Fields Complex in Turners Falls.
After a scrum in the middle of the field, Kelly Sweeney scored the only goal of the match 37 minutes in on an assist by Grace Grover.
The Indians outshot the Warriors 12-6, while Turners’ goalie Ashley Williams and her counterpart Nicole Bitzer recorded four saves each.
Sabis 10, Greenfield 0 — Avalon Mateo scored four times on Wednesday and Sabis International Charter School beat Greenfield High School, 10-0, in an independent girls’ soccer game in Greenfield.
Stefania Falvo scored twice in the win, while Lindsay Ferreira added one goal and two assists. Rachel Brown and Tiffany Alban each chipped in a pair of helpers.
Allison Roe made 20 saves in the Green Wave net.