McCann Tech boys soccer team tops Hampden Charter 3-0

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NORTH ADAMS — The McCann Tech boys soccer team is still a work in progress, but the Hornets have put themselves on the doorstep of a Western Mass. Division IV tournament berth.

The Hornets picked up a 3-0 win over visiting Hampden Charter on Thursday, with Nick LaForest and Ivan Liang setting each other up for goals early in the first half to put the game out of reach. Now 8-5-1 on the year, McCann needs just one more point (a draw) over its last four games to secure a playoff berth.

"It was definitely a great win," LaForest said. "We just look forward to playing next week, and we're focusing a lot on winning the next game so we can get into the tournament."

In a game that was at times disjointed, McCann got all the scoring it needed in the ninth minute. Liang started the sequence with a chipped pass over the top of the Hampden Charter defense to free LaForest, then the senior striker sized up the goalie, and lofted a shot over the top and into the far corner.

"I saw the ball go over the top, and I saw the goalie come out," LaForest said of the situation. "The whole right side, it was a wide-open net, so I just chipped it and saw the opportunity."

Six minutes later, LaForest set up the goal when his centering pass found Liang. Liang took his shot, and saw it deflect off a defender and into the net.

"It's a work in progress, obviously, but today it showed out really well for them," McCann coach John Bresett said of his attacking duo. "I thought today was the best game they've played together, combination wise. It seemed like they were both on the same page."

LaForest nearly bagged his second a minute after the Hornets went 2-0 up, but his header went just wide.

The third, and final goal came in the 38th minute. Matt Bailey, who spent a majority of the game out on the wing looking to cross back to his teammates, tried to line up a passing opportunity into the box, but instead of curving out, the ball sliced in and went over the goalkeeper's head, and into the far side of the net.

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Hampden Charter produced several chances in the second half, but Andrew Levesque (8 saves) was up to the task each time, including a pair of one-on-one situations that resulted in saves instead of goals.

"He's always aware, which is definitely what we ask of him," Bresett said of his goalkeeper. "It's definitely a tough job, like you said, he can get lulled to sleep and that's when you're most vulnerable. He did his job, made some really key saves to keep the clean sheet. It's another win, and I know he's happy about it."

McCann can wrap up its playoff spot on Monday, when the Hornets travel to Smith Vocational for a 4 p.m. start.

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Hampden     0     0     —     0

McCann     3     0     —     3

First Half

MT — Nick LaForest (Ivan Liang), 8:34. MT — Liang (LaForest), 14:02. MT — Matt Bailey (Evan McAllister), 37:04.

Saves — HC: Justin Clarkson 3. MT: Andrew Levesque 8.

Geoff Smith can be reached at gsmith@berkshireeagle.com, @GSmith_Eagle on Twitter and 413-496-6254.

McCann     3     0     —     3

First Half

MT — Nick LaForest (Ivan Liang), 8:34. MT — Liang (LaForest), 14:02. MT — Matt Bailey (Evan McAllister), 37:04.

Saves — HC: Justin Clarkson 3. MT: Andrew Levesque 8.

Geoff Smith can be reached at gsmith@berkshireeagle.com, @GSmith_Eagle on Twitter and 413-496-6254.

First Half

MT — Nick LaForest (Ivan Liang), 8:34. MT — Liang (LaForest), 14:02. MT — Matt Bailey (Evan McAllister), 37:04.

Saves — HC: Justin Clarkson 3. MT: Andrew Levesque 8.

Geoff Smith can be reached at gsmith@berkshireeagle.com, @GSmith_Eagle on Twitter and 413-496-6254.


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