Boys’ Soccer: The top seeded team in the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Division One tournament continued its run through the field and advanced to the final four with wins over Leominster, 2-1, and Beverly, 4-1.
In the quarterfinal game against Beverly, with over 700 fans in attendance, CC junior Matias Bout put the Patriots on the board in the tenth minute when he scored for the 1-0 lead. The Patriots continued their first half dominance and scored again in the 36th minute when senior Ben Bury put the ball into the far-right corner from the left side. Bury had assisted on Bout’s goal, and Bout returned the favor and assisted on Bury’s.
“Benny Bury played a great game,” said Head Coach Ray Pavlik. “Matias’s early goal got us going,” he added.
Concord-Carlisle continued its dominance in the second half as Bury struck again, this time scoring off a rebound five minutes into the half. “I put as much curl on the ball as I could to make sure it went in,” Bury said. “I knew I had to step up and make the most of my chances.”
It didn’t take the Patriots long to score again as senior Gavin Cheung drilled a shot past the Beverly goalkeeper, just over a minute after Bury’s second goal, for the 4-0 lead. For the midfielder who had missed five weeks due to an injury it was his first varsity goal.
“We have had to keep proving that we are number one for a reason,” added Bury. “We use the term “Relentless Dominance” to keep us going.”
The Patriots have indeed been relentless throughout the season and especially through the advancement to the final four, consistently making plays on both sides of the ball.
“Our defense has been amazing,” Pavlik said. “They have stepped up and improved throughout the season.”
That was clearly evident in a first half play: Senior captain goalkeeper Ben Wasserman came out of the goal to make a play and three of his teammates formed a wall to ensure no Beverly shot would find the back of the net.
The defense again played well for the Patriots, led by seniors Captain Doug Fortier, Sean Trudeau, Harry Lefebvre, Stage Casparis and Captain Goalkeeper Ben Wasserman.
In the 2-1 win over Leominster, senior Captain Brady Poor scored both CC goals. The game-winner came in the 73rd minute and was a hard left-footed shot that went right past the Leominster keeper.
Poor scored in the first half on a header set up by a great pass from sophomore Mikey Jantzen. The pass was from the right side and found Poor in front of the net.
“My first goal was all Mikey,” said Poor.
Poor scored the first three tournament goals for the Patriots. Asked how he continues to succeed despite being double and even triple-teamed, Poor explained, “My teammates do a great job of finding me in open spaces,” adding, “The coaches are great with helping me make adjustments during the game.”
“Brady is an incredible player,” added Pavlik. “His physical presence and skills combination make him a special player.” Also, “Our defense was super good; they played well as a unit.”
Poor’s two goals gave him 18 on the season in 18 games. Junior Jamo Velez and senior Ben Bury are each next on the list with six goals each.
Girls’ Soccer: The Patriots traveled to Winchester on November 7 and avenged their 3-2 earlier regular-season loss as they defeated the eighth seed 2-0 to advance to the quarterfinals.
Both goals came in the second half: With 20 minutes remaining, senior Charlotte DiRocco took a corner from senior Caroline Coletti and calmly played a volley past the keeper. The goal was the first of DiRocco’s career. Coletti added the second goal about three minutes later. Ninth-grader Ainsley Siefer played a through ball to Coletti, who dribbled into the middle and launched a hard left-footed shot past the Winchester keeper in the upper corner.
“Before the game, I told the team we were the team with better overall skills, but we had to match their intensity and aggressiveness,” said Head Coach Peter Fischelis.
Senior Goalkeeper Ally Berlam made a couple of big saves in the first half to keep the score at 0-0. She recorded her 11th shutout of the season.
With the win over Winchester, the Patriots advanced to a quarterfinal game against top-seeded Natick (18-1-1) on November 12.
The more than 400 fans in attendance were treated to a great Division One tournament game. Both teams made big plays on offense and defense. In the end, Natick showed why they were top seed.
Natick struck first, scoring less than four minutes into the game when Nicole Proia put the ball into the upper corner for the 1-0 lead. The rest of the half was back and forth, with Natick having moments of dominance, but being unable to score again. With a minute and a half left before halftime the Patriots’ DiRocco drilled a shot from about 18 yards out that hit the crossbar and bounced into the goal to knot the score at 1-1.
“DiRocco’s score was a great goal,” said Fischelis. “It breathed new life into us.”
DiRocco had scored in the Winchester game and had the first two goals of her varsity career in her final two games.
The Patriots goal was the first given up by Natick since October 17 against Framingham, covering a span of eight games.
The score stayed at 1-1 until 19 minutes into the final half, when Natick’s Megan Meia scored to give the Red Hawks a 2-1 lead. Just a minute and a half later, Ashlynn O’Donnell scored, and it was 3-1 Natick.
“I am so proud of all the team accomplished this season,” Fischelis said. “We went further in the tournament than expected.”
Field Hockey: The Patriots’ 2023 season ended with their 2-1 loss at Algonquin on November 7 in the second round of the MIAA Division One tournament.
Algonquin scored within the opening minute to take a quick 1-0 lead. Unfortunately, CC couldn’t come back and pull off the victory. Ninth-grader Avery Swenson scored the lone Patriots goal. The team finished 14-5-1.
Cross Country: The boys’ team competed at the MIAA Division 1, Wave B Cross Country Tournament on November 11 at the Gardner Municipal Golf Course.
Though the team just missed out on competing on November 18, senior Thomas Rivier and sophomore Charlie MacDonald will move on as individual qualifiers representing Concord-Carlisle.
Seniors Christopher Lando, Liam Quinn and Thomas Rivier; junior Sam Snell; sophomores Joey Bodenrader, Luke Crounse, Charlie MacDonald, Brendan Quinn and Adam Synnestvedt; and ninth-grader Sawyer Bout were the 10 declared to represent Concord-Carlisle. Only seven boys can toe the line.
The Patriots finished in eighth place with 213 points, just one behind Beverly. That one point was enough to keep CC from moving on to the Division One state meet, as only the top seven teams advanced to compete at Fort Devens on November 18. They were third among Dual County League schools, behind Westford Academy (second, 87 points) and Boston Latin (fourth, 139 points). Thomas Rivier was the top Patriots finisher, coming in 24th in 16:57.50 in the 5K race. Following Rivier was Charles MacDonald in 37th in 17:20.49, Brendan Quinn in 47th in 17:35.49, Luke Crounse in 52nd in 17:42.91, Adam Synnestvedt in 53rd in 17:42.92, Joey Bodenrader in 82nd in 18:18.20 and Liam Quinn in 93rd in 18:0.75.
“The team was expected to finish in tenth place,” said Head Coach Mary McCabe. “The boys ran a strong race, finishing eighth as a team, just missing a seventh place auto-qualifier spot by one point!”
McCabe explained that Gardner is a challenging course. Too slow at the start and it’s difficult to move up, given some of the narrow crossings and turns. For nearly the entire race, competitors are running uphill or down — rarely, if ever, on level ground.
The girls’ cross-country team also competed at Gardner. The Patriots finished in ninth place with 231 points. They were the first Dual County team league as Lincoln-Sudbury came in 12th. Ninth-grader Maria Chopas finished first for CC, coming in 33rd in 20:43.63. She was followed by ninth-grader Alex Skelly in 34th in 20:47.49, ninth-grader Pelin Turner in 44th in 21:16.95, ninth-grader Abigail Adams in 45th in 21:17.98, ninth-grader Allison Sheppard in 75th in 22:32.91 and junior Isabel Crowell in 95th in 23:30.07.
The following Concord-Carlisle student athletes have signed their NCAA National Letter of intent.
PJ Balazy will be attending Virginia and competing in women’s crew. Lucas Bikkesbakker will be going to College of the Holy Cross to compete on the men’s tennis team. Willow Cyr will be traveling to Berkeley to attend the University of California and compete in women’s lacrosse. Alana Leen is going to Villanova University to compete for the women’s swim team. Thomas Murdough will attend Rutgers University and play on the men’s golf team, and Ali Saunders is going to Tulane University to compete on the women’s track and field team.