Div. 4 boys soccer: Overtime goal sinks Frontier as South Hadley advances to title game, 2-1 (PHOTOS)

  • Frontier's Chanhee Son (17) moves the ball defended by South Hadley’s Jack Chagnon (14) as snow falls in the second half of the the MIAA Division 4 boys soccer state semifinal Tuesday in West Springfield. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Frontier's Chanmin Son, second from right, heads the ball away from South Hadley while his teammate Matt Sicard, second form left, observes. South Hadley's Ben Foley, left, and Matt Gillis, right, fight for the header in the Division 4 boys soccer sate semifinal Tuesday in West Springfield STAFF PHOTO / KYLE GRABOWSKI—

  • Frontier's Chanhee Son (17) jumps up for a header against South Hadley’s Colin Quinn (25) as snow falls in the second half of the the Division 4 boys soccer state semifinal Tuesday in West Springfield. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

  • Frontier's Brady Burch (9), left, takes a breakaway shot saved by South Hadley goalkeeper Eddie Wykowski in the second half of the the Division 4 boys soccer state semifinal Tuesday in West Springfield. STAFF PHOTO/DAN LITTLE

Staff Writer
Published: 11/15/2022 9:15:30 PM

WEST SPRINGFIELD – South Hadley’s Charlie Anischik headed in a goal that sent the Tigers to the MIAA Division 4 boys soccer state final Tuesday.

Nate Carillon delivered a perfect cross from a corner kick three minutes into overtime through the snowy night, and Anischik pounded it into the back of the net to lift the top-seeded Tigers to a 2-1 victory over No. 5 Frontier in the semifinals at Clark Field. It was South Hadley’s second corner of the sequence.

The teams were meeting for the third time this season, and the Tigers improved their record to 2-0-1 in the matchup of Moriarty League rivals. A Moriarty team will play for the Division 4 title for the second year in a row.

“It’s a hard pill to swallow, but it means our league is good,” Frontier coach Evan Horton said.

South Hadley will face either No. 10 Randolph or No. 6 Blackstone Valley at a site to be determined Saturday. Frontier reached the state final last season and is one of just two Western Massachusetts teams along with Belchertown to return to the state final four.

Frontier’s Devin Niles, as he did for most of the Redhawks’ run to the state final last season, showed up in a big spot. The ball bounced out to him in the 38th minute, and he blasted it in for a 1-0 lead.

“That was everything. It elevated us. To be honest, I thought that was it,” Horton said. “I thought we’d hold onto 1-0, or I thought we’d get a second one. Dev’s always a spark. Everyone focuses on Brady (Burch), but Dev’s that guy that takes care of chances.”

The goal deflated South Hadley heading into halftime after they didn’t get a chance to push back for an equalizer.

“The first five and last five of any half can either control or kill the game at any point,” South Hadley coach Eric Castonguay said. “They were defeated at the end of the half, and we talked about it if we weren’t going to recover from this we might as well get on the bus and go home.”

The first five of the second half wounded the Redhawks. They were whistled for a hand ball in the box in the 43rd minute. There was no doubt Anischik would take the spot kick. The senior buried the penalty down and to the left for his 34th goal of the season, setting a single-season school record. More importantly, it knotted the game at 1-1.

The score stayed there for the rest of the second half as the snowfall intensified. A white layer blanketed the field, obscuring the lines. Flakes first fell in the 23rd minute, and picked up as the night continued.

Players, coaches and fans stamped out the boundaries of the field and the penalty boxes before the overtime period.

“I’ve played in games like this. You’ve just got to do it,” Horton said. “It is one of those things they’ll remember forever. Over time, the loss won’t be as big a part of it.”


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