Mount Everett goes up early, hangs on late to top Mohawk in Western Mass. Division IV tournament
SHEFFIELD — The Mount Everett boys soccer team opened up its Western Massachusetts Division IV playoff campaign with a 4-2 win over No. 9 Mohawk Thursday afternoon, battling both the Warriors and the weather to get the win.
With steady rain and the temperatures falling, the No. 1 Eagles raced out to a 3-0 lead in the first half, hung on as Mohawk drew two back before the break, then rode Jack Carpenter's second-half penalty to the final whistle.
"Yeah, we came out and started great," Carpenter said. "We were moving the ball and playing our game. We got up 3-0, but then we took our foot off the gas a bit and let them get back in."
Mount Everett got on the board under a minute in. David Bautista-Cruz played a ball out to Andrew Consolini on the right wing, and Consolini sent in a low cross to Pedro Rodrigo, and Rodrigo was able to tap home.
In the 15th minute the lead was doubled. Again from the right wing on a cross from Jacob TenBroeck. Jordan Peck was the one waiting in the box, and after letting the ball bounce on the turf, Peck poked home to make it 2-0. The Eagles added another two minutes later, when Carpenter sent a header from a corner kick in the direction of the Mohawk goal. A defender got his body on the ball, but redirected it toward the net, and Reuben Bassett was unable to keep it out.
"The first few minutes of the game were great," Everett coach Joe McSpiritt said. "We came out hard, put the pressure on them, kept it in their half of the field and were able to take our good chances."
Mohawk — playing in a the tournament a year after not having a varsity program — kept with it, though, and got a response in the 21st minute. Tyler Sermini was called for a hand ball in the box and Keeman Ramirez stepped up to the spot to take the kick. He sent his shot directly at Michael Devoti, but the Eagles 'keeper was unable to corral the ball before it spilled into his net.
Seven minutes later, the Warriors made things very interesting when a cross from Tyler Dubreuil wasn't cleared by the defense, and John Richardson was there to finish up the chance.
"It was a long bus ride down here, we came off the bus a little flat," Mohawk coach Nick Brown said. "But hey, we came out here and the guys did everything I could have asked. They came out — sure they scored those three quick goals, but we answered back with two of our own."
Carpenter eased the tension when he scored his penalty eight minutes into the second half. Consolini drew the foul, and Carpenter blasted his effort in.
"Since I was little, I've been pretty good at penalties. I always just pick my spots and stay there, no matter what the goalie is doing," Carpenter said of his attempt.
And while Devoti could have been sulking after giving up the penalty goal, he instead made sure the lead stood up in the second half. Devoti had several acrobatic saves to deny shots heading toward the corners of his goal, and in one sequence he parried a shot by Jamie Colmenarejo, then scooped the loose ball up off the feet of a Mohawk player.
"I have a lot of confidence in him, the guys have a ton of confidence in him," McSpiritt said of his goalkeeper. "He's been like that all year, making big saves."
Devoti finished the night with five saves, including four in the second half. Bassett stopped 15 shots in the loss, as players like Eduardo Rodriguez, Bautista-Cruz, Carpenter and TenBroeck consistently peppered the goal.
With the win, the Eagles advance to the Western Mass. semifinals next week. They will play the winner of No. 4 Gateway vs. No. 5 Monson, which is scheduled for Saturday at 5 p.m.
Mohawk 2 0 — 2
Everett 3 1 — 4
ME — Pedro Rodrigo (Andrew Consolini), 1:00. ME — Jordan Peck (Jacob TenBroeck), 16:00. ME — Jack Carpenter (Alek Zdziarski), 18:00. Mo — Keeman Ramirez (penalty kick), 21:00. Mo — John Richardson (unassisted), 28:00.
ME — Carpenter (penalty kick), 48:00.
Saves — Mo: Reuben Bassett 15. ME: Michael Devoti 5.
Geoff Smith can be reached at email@example.com, @GSmith_Eagle on Twitter and 413-496-6254.
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