Sharon, 1 @ Franklin, 2 – Final – Franklin made it two wins in a row, this time taking down visiting Sharon. Hansy Jacques opened his account on the season in the 27th minute, finishing off a pass from Rex Cinelli to give the Panthers a 1-0 lead. Senior Terry O’Neill doubled Franklin’s advantage off of an assist from Tim O’Keefe.
Foxboro, 1 @ Taunton, 0 – Final – Foxboro broke the deadlock with the lone goal of the game with just over 10 minutes to play to grab a win on the road at Taunton. After an hour of scoreless play, Foxboro senior Matt Angelini put the visitors ahead in the 68th minute, finishing off a corner kick from John Hollis.
Attleboro, 0 @ Canton, 4 – Final
Franklin, 3 @ Sharon, 1 – Final – Sophomore Anya Zub scored twice and had one assist as the Panthers picked up two points on the road. Zub scored one goal off a pass from Norah Anderson and her second came off a pass from Izzy Arnold. Zub set up Stella Regan for a goal for the Panthers, who had a 2-0 lead at halftime. Amber Marcus-Blank had the Sharon goal, burying her chance from the spot. Sofia Goclowski and Carly Pinnix played well for the Eagles in the midfield and Samantha Connors had strong games in defense and in goal.
Taunton, 0 @ Foxboro, 6 – Final – Foxboro made sure there was no slip up at home against Taunton, extending its unbeaten streak to 11 games and remaining in a first-place tie with OA. Kailee McCabe continued her torrid scoring run with four goals. Erin Foley and Jordan Carman each found the back of the net once. Grace Riley had a pair of assists, while Lauren Miley and Kylie O’Keefe each had one.
Oliver Ames, 3 @ Canton, 1 – Final – For the second straight day, Oliver Ames overcame a one-set deficit to pick up a 3-1 win, this time on the road against division foe Canton (19-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-18). Sophomore Claire O’Rourke had a standout performance at the net for the Tigers with 14 kills and three aces. Head coach Chelsea Cunningham said that Hadley Rhodes dished out 46 assists, Maddie Homer recorded a season-high 54 digs, and Sarah Hillard had 26 kills. For Canton, Jess Wright led the offense with 17 kills while Anna Verille and Zoe Scibelli combined for 30 digs.
Franklin, 1 vs. Xaverian, 0 – Final – Franklin bounced back from a loss on Friday afternoon by earning two points against the visiting Hawks. Sophomore Andrew O’Neill scored the game-winning goal midway through the second half off a feed from Rex Cinelli.
Mansfield, 1 @ Attleboro, 1 – Final – Mansfield got off to a great start with a goal in the opening minutes but it was all Attleboro the rest of the way, The Bombardiers leveled the game just before halftime and both teams took a point with a 1-1 draw. Junior Connor Palinski finished off a pass from classmate Grady Sullivan just three minutes into the game to take the lead. Attleboro sophomore Alex Vecchioli brought the Bombardiers level just before the halftime whistle on an assist from Kyle Neuendorf.
Foxboro, 1 @ Canton, 2 – Final
King Philip, 0 @ Franklin, 2 – Final – Franklin scored twice in a 10-minute span in the second half and got a strong performance from its back line to blank King Philip. Jack Moran broke the stalemate with a goal in the 65th minute on an assist from Will Krysak. Ten minutes later, senior Terry O’Neill doubled the lead and buried the insurance goal off a feed from Ben Costa. The Panthers got strong defensive performances Aidan Griffith, Rex Cinelli, Bradley Herndon, Nelson Martinez, Will Klawson, and Andrew O’Neill.
Taunton, 2 @ Milford, 2 – Final – Taunton jumped out to a two goal lead in the first half but Milford cut the deficit in half by the break and scored the tying goal in the final minutes to get the tie. An own goal gave the Tigers the lead and senior Jairson Varela finished from in close to push the advantage to 2-0. A corner kick from Bill Silva was misplayed and went in shortly before half to get the Hawks on the board. On a counter attack, Silva played Eduardo Santana in behind the defense and he finished with two minutes to go to grab a point.
Oliver Ames, 6 @ North Attleboro, 0 – Final – Oliver Ames stayed red hot on the offensive end of the pitch, pumping in six goals for the second straight contest. Senior Clide Neau scored a hat to lead the way while classmate Michael Haikal scored once and had one assist. John Dobbin added two goals, Mathias Taylor recorded three assists, and Casey Milliken had two assists.
Stoughton, 1 @ Sharon, 2 – Final
Attleboro, 0 @ Mansfield, 4 – Final – Kara Santos scored twice and assisted on another goal, while also helping the Hornets defense keep an important clean sheet. The win keeps Mansfield in a first-place tie with Franklin in the Kelley-Rex standings. Katie Miller and Lyla Nappa also scored for the Hornets, while Olivia Salisbury made three saves in goal.
Franklin, 1 @ King Philip, 0 – Final – Stella Regan scored from about 30 yards out after taking a throw-in from Jackie O’Neil. It turned out to be the winner, as the Franklin defense and goalie Rachel Welch made it stand up. The win keeps the Panthers in a first-place tie with Mansfield and drops KP two points back of the division leaders. Bridget Leo, Chloe Barca, and Regan had strong games in the center of the pitch and Franklin coach Jodi Klein praised her team’s ability to control the ball and stay focused throughout.
Milford, 4 @ Taunton, 1 – Final – Serena Borges had a brace and Dani Atherton (a goal and two assists) totaled three points, as Milford went on the road and picked up its first win of the season. Freshman Paige Caldon also found the back of the net for the Hawks, her first varsity goal. Kailany Ferreira made seven saves in goal, picking up her first career win in the process.
North Attleboro, 0 @ Oliver Ames, 4 – Final – Katie Gibson and Camryn O’Connor each found the back of the net twice as Oliver Ames rolled to a win at home over the Rocketeers. Kyla Melton, Sophie Byron, and Ella McDonough all had strong games for the Tigers while Charlotte Moynihan, Abby Pratt and Brayden Rice played well for North Attleboro.
Sharon, 2 @ Stoughton, 3 – Final – Sivannah Marcy scored with a few minutes remaining to lift Stoughton to come from behind victory. Trailing 2-1 at the break, Stoughton moved Shayla Ford up front to try to get more of an attacking threat and it worked as she scored the equalizer, assisted by Lauren Mitchell. Makenzie O’Connor, in her first game back from an injury, got her second assist of the day, setting up Marcy for the winner. O’Connor also set up the game’s opening goal with a cross to Isabella Rodrigues, who put away her first goal of the season. Sharon came storming back as Sofia Goclowski and Wendy Wooden each found the back of the net, both assisted by Autumn Simon. The Eagles had chances to extend the lead, but couldn’t take their opportunities and the Black Knights put together a comeback to split the season series. Bianca Casna and Sabrina Rodrigues also played well to help Stoughton earn the win.
Foxboro, 4 @ Hopkinton, 0 – Final
Oliver Ames, 3 @ Brockton, 0 – Final – Senior Shannon Willard dished out 14 assists and Oliver Ames picked up a 3-0 win (25-11, 25-11, 25-20) over neighboring Brockton. Junior Maddie Homer added 21 digs, senior Hadley Rhodes recorded 11 assists and seven kills, and sophomore Claire O’Rourke chipped in with 10 kills.
Mansfield, 168 @ Canton, 147 – Final – Canton sophomore Mekhala Costello fired a one over par round of 35 to lead the Bulldogs to their second win in as many days. Nate MacDonald added a 36 for the hosts while both Conor Hunter and Will Gefteas finished the day with a 38. Cian Goulet had a team-low round of 39, Ryan Doherty shot a 42 on the day, Hunter Tang chipped in with a 43, and both Drew Urban and Nate McClean finished at 44.
Taunton, 190 @ Milford, 178 – Final – Jacob Hipolito and Anthony LaPierre shared match medalist honors to help Milford record its second win over Taunton in as many days, sweeping the series against the Tigers with a win at Hopedale Country Club. Both LaPierre and Hipolito finished with a round of 42. Loran Corcoran led Taunton with a 46 while Jack Gobin added a 47.
Oliver Ames, 160 @ Sharon, 171 – Final – Oliver Ames went on the road and returned home from The Cape Club of Sharon with a division win over the Eagles. Senior Jo Jo Gaultier shot a team-low round of 38 to help the Tigers pick up their ninth win of the season. Sean Kearns added a 40 for OA while both Lucas Riley and Jack Kaplan came into the clubhouse with a 41.
Attleboro, 169 @ Franklin, 157 – Final – Franklin defended its home turf with a win over upset-minded Attleboro at Franklin Country Club. Jack Hagerty led the way for the Panthers with a team-best round of 36, Brendan Collins added a 39, CJ Steel chipped in with a 41, and Jack Ryan finished at 42 for the day.
King Philip, 0 @ Attleboro, 2 – Final – Attleboro netted a pair of goals in the second half to earn two hard-fought points at home against visiting King Philip. A long throw from sophomore Luke Hagopian played senior Connor Adema down the right wing, and Adema cut in before tapping a centering pass for an easy touch in front for sophomore Billy Badger in the 58th minute. The Bombardiers doubled the lead in the 67th minute when junior Lucas Marques forced a turnover, connected with Esvin Morales, who one touched it on to Alex Vecchioli and the sophomore’s shot eluded the keeper on the bounce.
Sharon, 2 @ Canton, 3 – Final – Click here for a Photo Gallery from this game. Canton twice came back from a goal down in the first half and then Erik Valdovinos found a winner just three minutes after the break to lift Canton to the division victory. Adam Eastman scored twice in the first half for the Eagles. The first came after three minutes when he ran onto a through ball and side-footed his finish into the far corner. His second was in the 24th minute as he rounded the keeper and was able to slide his shot in from a tight angle. Dylan Baird equalized for Canton after a nice turn and a shot through a defender’s legs into the bottom corner. After falling behind again, Canton was able to get back level six minutes before halftime. A low cross from Jake McCabe was partially deflected by Jacob Crugnale into the path of Charlie McKinney and he curled it from 18 yards. Three minutes into the second half, Valdovinos hit a low cross from the left that deflected off a Sharon defender and into the corner for the go-ahead goal. Sharon’s best chance at a tying goal came on a breakaway in the final 10 minutes but Amjad Kordab’s shot was parried by Canton keeper Giovanni Ruggeri and cleared by Jay Kelleher.
Foxboro, 0 @ Oliver Ames, 2 – Final – Oliver Ames scored once in each half to earn a key division win over Foxboro, pushing its win streak to five games. Senior Clide Neau put the hosts ahead in the first half, finishing off a pass from Antonio Fernandes. The Tigers doubled the lead in the second half when freshman Casey Milliken played sophomore Joey Carney for a goal. Mathias Taylor and Michael Haikal played well in the middle for OA.
Milford, 1 @ Franklin, 1 – Final – Franklin and Milford traded first half goals and the match finished level with each team taking home a point. The hosts struck first to take the lead when Jack Moran scored off of an assist from Rex Cinelli in the 14th minute. But just five minutes later, Bill Silva knotted the score on a pass from Avi Serri.
North Attleboro, 4 @ Stoughton, 2 – Final – North Attleboro twice erased a one-goal deficit and then scored the final two goals in the last 20 minutes to take a win on the road over Stoughton. The Black Knights opened the scoring in the 16th minute only for North Attleboro’s Brody Rosenberg to equalize in the 35th minute, finishing off a corner from Connor Ward. Stoughton regained the lead early in the second half but Bryce Newth nodded in a cross from Griffin Rodden in the 57th minute to bring the game level again. Quinn Conley gave the visitors their first lead by finishing off a cross from Ward in the 64th minute and tacked on an insurance goal in the 71st minute off a feed from Carson Dameron.
Attleboro, 0 @ King Philip, 6 – Final – Ella Pisani and Mikayla Thompson each recorded a brace and KP scored three times in each half to pick up the big win and remain atop the Kelley-Rex. Pisani opened the scoring in the 12th minute, finishing a corner kick from Morgan Norrman. Thompson doubled the lead eight minutes before the break, after a great pass by Dani Lomuscio, and then added her second two minutes later, this time off an assist from Pisani. Pisani scored in the opening minute of the second half on a free kick. Norrman had her second assist, setting up Kylie Menendez to make it 5-0 and Sarah Harper wrapped up the scoring with four minutes to play after being played behind the defense by Danielle Gresham.
Oliver Ames, 1 @ Foxboro, 2 – Final – Jordan Carman found the back of the net with four minutes left in regulation to lift Foxboro to a dramatic win and into a tie for first place in the Davenport division. Camryn O’Connor broke the deadlock with 25 minutes to play, putting the Tigers in front by a goal, but Kailee McCabe equalized from the penalty spot. Foxboro coach Katie Stalcup said, “I am so proud of my team and the fight they gave today. All-around amazing effort by all!” Kyla Melton and Mary Cross both had strong games for OA.
Franklin, 4 @ Milford, 0 – Final – Anya Zub had a hat trick to lead the Panthers to the road win and keep them within two points of first place in the division. With three goals on Thursday, Zub hit double digits (12) for the season. Kelly O’Connor added the fourth for Franklin. Stella Regan, Bridget Leo, Reilly Lorenzo, and Tori Carmignani all had assists for the visitors. Kailany Ferreira had a big game for the Hawks, making 18 saves to keep the hosts in the game. Brooke Ferreira, Serena Borges, and Aislinn Bennett also played well for Milford, whose head coach Lou Colabello said he was proud of how his team competed despite not getting the result.
Stoughton, 1 @ North Attleboro, 2 – Final – Emma Pratt had a goal and an assist and North Attleboro earned its second straight win, moving back to .500 on the season. Steph McKenna opened the scoring in the 32nd minute, off a pass from Pratt. Autumn Hewitt set up Pratt for what turned out to be the game-winner, as Pratt was able to beat the keeper to the ball and finish. Sivannah Marcy got the lone goal for the Black Knights in the closing minutes. North coach Bill Wallace praised the play of midfielders Brayden Rice, Charlotte Moynihan, Brooke Sullivan, and Lily Adams. Stoughton coach Hermes Lima is hoping that his team can carry momentum from a solid performance into Friday’s game with Norwood. He highlighted Morgan Cook for her playmaking and Shayla Ford for being able to create scoring chances. Lima also credited Bianca Casna and Emma Byrne for being able to put pressure on the North defense.
Taunton, 24 @ Franklin, 32 – Final
Oliver Ames @ Canton, 3:45
Taunton, 40 @ Franklin, 21 – Final – Franklin took first and second overall, three of the top five, and used its depth to take a win over Taunton. Senior Charlene Peng clocked in at 20:20 for first overall while sophomore Alexandra Batla took second in 20:30. Taunton freshmen Colby Dunham (20:39) and Emerson Deponte (20:49) finished third and fourth, respectively, while Franklin sophomore Vivienne Loukota took fifth in 21:33.
Oliver Ames @ Canton, 3:45
Canton, 147 @ Taunton, 177 – Final – Canton’s Will Gefteas fired a two-under par round to lead the Bulldogs to a big win on the road. Gefteas came in with a two-under round of 34 for medalist honors while Mekhala Costello shot a 37, and both Conor Hunter and Mike Leonetti carded rounds of 38. Jack Gobin led the way for Taunton with a 38.
Mansfield, 164 @ Taunton, 177 – Final – Junior Drew Urban fired a 41 in his first varsity match, helping the Hornets pick up their 10th win of the season against Taunt. Senior Cian Goulet shot a team-low round of 39, senior Hunter Tang added a 40, Urban came in with a 41, and Jordan Tavares, Ryan Doherty and Nathan McLean all shot a 44. Jack Gobin earned medalist honors, leading Taunton with a low-round of 38.
Attleboro, 161 @ Milford, 170 – Final – Brendan Raymond earned medalist honors, coming in as the lone golfer under 40 for the day to lead the Bombardiers past Milford at Hopedale Country Club. Raymond shot a 36, Evan Houle and Leo Lombardo each carded a 41, and Jackson Sweeney finished with a 43 for Attleboro. Nate Lawrence led the Scarlet Hawks with a 40 while Ronan Fleming shot a 43.
Foxboro, 162 @ King Philip, 148 – Final – Mike Matheson had the best individual round of any Hock golfer this season as King Philip took down Foxboro. Matheson had three birdies (three, four, six) and added an eagle on the fifth hole to finish with a 31. Jared Curran added a 37 while both Pat Reardon and Gavin Croke shot a 40 for the hosts. Jack Watts led Foxboro with a team-low round of 37.
Oliver Ames, 150 @ Stoughton, 196 – Final – Oliver Ames senior Jo Jo Gaultier recorded four birdies and the Tigers rolled to a win at Easton Country Club. Gaultier birdied on two, six, eight, and nine to finish with a two-under medalist round of 34. Senior Jake Kaplan added a 38 in the win while sophomores Sean Kearns and David Rodgers each carded a 39. Anthony Hern led the way for the Black Knights with a 41.
2019 Record: 6-9-3 2019 Finish: Missed playoffs Coach: Peter Pereira
One more goal scored or one goal less allowed could have changed the entire outcome of the 2019 season for the Bombardiers, who suffered six one-goal losses and three draws. Now with more varsity experience under their belts, Attleboro is aiming to surprise some teams in the hunt for the Kelley-Rex division title this season.
Longtime head coach Peter Pereira is counting on that experience to translate into leadership on and off the field. Senior goalie Zackary Brown is back in net for the Bombardiers and is showing more confidence inside the area. Senior Joey Soucy is making the transition to defense and will play alongside classmates Jayden Lockhart and Andrew Fasoldt. Junior Cashel Stuger is also back in the mix defensively while seniors Henry Marini and Alejandro Jimenez could factor into the defensive unit as well.
Jackson Singer emerged as a strong option in the midfield in his first season with the Bombardiers and should be a big piece again this year. Singer will pair up with Hugo Henriquez to give Attleboro an experienced duo in the heart of the pitch. Seniors Ben Fasoldt, Emilio Amaya, and Tyler Sar will all be apart of the midfield while juniors Tom Russo and Emilio Ticas should see valuable minutes for the Bombardiers. Freshman Alex Vecchioli has shown a lot of versatility so far and could play in a variety of roles.
Up front, Attleboro will be relying on a combination of speed, tough, and work effort as they challenge opposing defenses. Depending on the pairing, Attleboro will be able to attack in a variety of ways. Seniors Justin Lurssen and Connor Paquin as well as juniors Liam Bischoff and Yianni Skordas will all see time in the attack. Sophomore Esvin Morales emerged as one of the top attacking threats a year ago and will be among the top finishers in the league.
“We have a good group of seniors and hope that this experience will pay off,” Pereira said. “We believe we will have a more competitive, more mature, and more balanced team.”
2019 Record: 4-12-2 2019 Finish: Missed playoffs Coach: Danny Erickson
The Bulldogs were very young during the 2019 season with just a half dozen seniors on the squad, but that meant plenty of young players were able to gain valuable on-field experience at the varsity level. Now the Bulldogs will be looking to contend in a very competitive Davenport division in the shortened 2020 season.
The defense will be the backbone of the team this season as the Bulldogs have a lot of experience at the centerback position. Senior captain Matt Giglio is back for his third year with the squad after being a key piece in each of the previous two years. He will be joined in the middle of the defense by Will Keefe, who anchored the Dogs’ backline last year and earned All-Hockomock honors.
Junior Dylan Baird had a breakout sophomore season and will be one of the main pieces in the midfield. After a down season for Canton on the offensive end as a whole last year, Baird’s presence in the midfield will help create opportunities going forward. Up front, the Bulldogs are counting on senior Colton Marliani to be a go-to scoring threat.
Canton already suffered a big blow as senior captain TJ McCabe, who has been with the squad since he was a freshman, will miss the season due to injury. On the flip side, the Bulldogs are getting a boost with the addition of Abdul Barrie. Barrie played in the youth leagues in Canton but will make his CHS debut this fall and could make a big impact for the Dogs.
“I think the rule modifications will challenge us all equally,” said longtime Canton head coach Danny Erickson. “But after a week or so of training, to me, it’s still soccer.”
2019 Record: 7-8-3 2019 Finish: Missed playoffs Coach: Dan Ambrosio
The Warriors had a sour taste in their mouth at the end of last season, losing the last game of the year to miss out on the playoffs. While Foxboro won’t have the chance to get back to the postseason this year, the Davenport division title is certainly in reach.
Foxboro graduated a couple of stalwarts (Joe Cusack, Dylan Barreira, Will Morrison) that were important pieces of the squad in each of the last couple of seasons, but there are plenty of experienced players back from last year’s seven-win squad plus a handful of new faces anxious to make their mark. Seniors Max Beigel and PJ Frost will give the Warriors plenty of leadership and experience, especially in the midfield and attacking third. Foxboro will look to play quick, using the counterattack to hit on the break.
After giving up nearly two goals a game a season ago, the Warriors are aiming to tighten up the back as they navigate through a very competitive Davenport division. First-year head coach Dan Ambrosio is also counting on new players like John Hollis and Ryan Flaherty to make an impact during the shortened season.
“We are a tight-knit group who like to have fun playing the game and look forward to representing our school and town,” Ambrosio said.
2019 Record: 9-7-4 2019 Finish: Reached D1 South Quarterfinal Coach: Fran Bositis
With returning players in most areas of the pitch and a trio of top midfielders in the Hockomock League, the Panthers should be in the mix for the Kelley-Rex title, although it could be one of the most competitive seasons since the league split into two.
With just 10 games and all six teams in the Kelley-Rex possible contenders, there is little margin for error. The Panthers will be put to the test right away as they take on Milford, who won the Davenport two years in a row and went to the D2 State Final last season, in the opening week. But longtime head coach Fran Bositis has plenty of talent on his roster to try and make a push for the division title. It all starts in the midfield with a trio of returning starters in Ethan Cain, Tyler Powderly, and last year’s HockomockSports Underclassman of the Year Terry O’Neill.
All three bring something different to the table which will make Franklin’s midfield among the most dynamic in the league. Powderly’s speed on the wings will give defenses fits while Cain will bring plenty of creativity as the Panthers push forward. O’Neill won’t be able to dominate in the air like he did a season ago thanks to the new modifications that ban headers, but the junior is also such a calming presence with the ball at his feet and will help Franklin keep possession. Ben Moccia, who started in the midfield a season ago, is moving up top to the number 9 spot, while Charlie Amante, Ryan Witt, Jack Moran, and Kevin Proenca will also see time in the attack.
The Panthers have some new faces in the defensive unit. Will Fox is the lone returning starter and has impressed in the early stages of the season. Sam George, Robbin Tappin, and Karl Gruseck will all factor into the Panthers’ defense while Aidan Griffith, Nelson Martinez, and Connor Scagliarini will be options for Bositis to play either defense or in the midfield. Newcomers Trey Lovell and Rex Cinelli could see valuable minutes right away. Former Panther standout goalie Freddie Backmann, who is without a season at Regis College, is mentoring Luc Boudreau, this year’s starting keeper for Franklin.
“I think that we have a very good group of athletes (soccer players) who have worked real hard in preparation for this season,” Bositis said. “I know that they are all excited to be playing and that they are looking forward to competing against the other Kelley-Rex teams and putting themselves in a position to challenge for a league championship.”
2019 Record: 8-5-6 2019 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round Coach: Mike O’Neill
King Philip was the surprise team of the 2019 season, overcoming a large amount of inexperience to take third in the Kelley-Rex and qualify for the state tournament. While the Warriors won’t sneak up on anyone this season, the skill and experience they return should put them in the mix for the division title.
Second-year head coach Mike O’Neill has strong players in all areas of the pitch, starting with senior captain Evan McEvoy. A four-year player with the program, McEvoy is coming off a breakout season in 2019 and will be among the top midfielders in the league. He will control the pace for the Warriors from the center of the pitch, working with fellow captain Alex Leon, who will use his speed to patrol the wings and get in behind the defense. Both Caleb Waxman and Stephen Griffin made an impact last season and should see expanded roles in the shortened 2020 season. Sophomore Matt Crago is a new face that could make a splash in his first year.
The Warriors should have one of the top defenses in the league again this season. Senior captain Aidan Lindmark is back in goal and his distribution skills will factor in heavily to how KP plays out of the back. Jeremy White had a strong 2019 season at center back and will bolster the Warriors’ backline when he returns from injury. In the meantime, four-year player Ajae Olsen, who is normally patrolling the wing or up top, will have his versatility on display as he slides into the centerback spot.
“Our players and coaches are thankful that we are at the point where we can have a season,” O’Neill said. “So much work and sacrifice have gone into getting the Hockomock League schools to this moment. I’m looking forward to some excellent and competitive soccer. I expect every game to be extremely competitive – there are no easy games in the Hock. Five wins may win the division.”
2019 Record: 6-7-5 2019 Finish: Missed playoffs Coach: Steve Sheridan
With just 10 games scheduled for the season, every game – from the first to the last – is going to be important. No one understands that more than the 2020 Hornets, who came up just short of the state tournament last year. After a slow start, Mansfield became one of the toughest teams to beat down the stretch, finishing on an eight-game unbeaten streak that featured an upset of division champion Oliver Ames but came just one point shy of postseason play.
With the postseason not in the picture for this year, the focus shifts on the division title. The Hornets are hoping to carry the momentum from the end of last season into this year. Mansfield will have a mix of veterans and inexperience in its defensive unit. Senior captain Evan Eames will be the centerpiece of the group alongside classmate Michael Jeans, who missed all of last season due to injury. Sophomores Grady Sullivan and Nate Kablik round out the Hornets’ back four while senior captain Eric Sullivan will take over starting in goal.
Senior captain Tommy Lanzillo will run the show from the center of the pitch, helping the Hornets transition from defense to offense. Lanzillo is strong with the ball at his feet and will help distribute as the Hornets hit on the counter. Senior Colin True and juniors Matt Hyland and Dan Rowe will join Lanzillo in the Hornets’ midfield. Junior Dylan Buchanan is back for his third year with the squad and will play up top alongside Aiden Steele.
2019 Record: 18-1-2 2019 Finish: D2 State Finalists Coach: Antonio Pinta
Milford arrives in the Kelley-Rex division with a huge target on its back. Coming off back-to-back Davenport division titles and a trip to the D2 State Final a season ago, the Hawks enter their new division as the favorite. But game in and game out, Milford can expect to get everyone’s best.
First-year head coach Antonio Pinto might be new to the varsity position but has been with the program during this successful run as an assistant and JV coach. It will all start with the reigning HockomockSports Player of the Year and Hockomock League MVP Leo Coelho, who can play just about any position on the pitch at a high level. If there is a need to shut down a high-powered offense, you might see Coelho playing defense. Or if the Hawks need a boost offensively, he can just as easily move up front and provide creativity in the final third.
The Hawks are far from a one-trick pony with both Lucas Da Silva (eight goals, seven assists) and Joao Pedro Da Silva (six goals, three assists) back in the mix this season. Replacing the Hockomock’s leading scorer in Pedro Araujo (25 goals, 11 assists) will be tough but we saw the Hawks do just that when Araujo took over for former HockomockSports Player of the Year Wallison de Oliveira.
Defensively, the Hawks will be strong up the middle. Junior Kevin Gomes returns to start in goal for the Hawks after getting valuable experience there during last year’s season and deep playoff run. And junior Chris Tocci is back in the heart of the defense at centerback after a breakout sophomore campaign. While the new regulations will certainly challenge the Hawks defensively with heading and slide tackling banned, Milford should have a big advantage offensively because of their strong possession skills.
“I’m very excited to be out there with the guys this season,” Pinto said. “We are ready to play no matter what the rules and conditions are! We’re ecstatic to have a season.”
2019 Record: 9-7-4 2019 Finish: Reached D2 South Quarterfinal Coach: Geoff Burgess
The Rocketeers and head coach Geoff Burgess have found a recipe for success over the past couple of seasons and will be looking to replicate that again this year. Defense always comes first for the Rocketeers, who allowed just 0.68 goals per game last year. While every team is being forced to make changes because of the new modifications due to COVID-19, the Rocketeers might be affected more than most with heading, slide tackles, and shoulder-to-shoulder challenges banned.
But the Rocketeers have adjusted during the preseason and will be relying on defense and goalkeeping once again this season. Replacing two-time HockomockSports Best XI selection Kyle Briere in net won’t be easy but the North Attleboro is turning to junior David Floyd, who is one of the most athletic players on the team this season according to Burgess. The Rocketeers also boast one of the best centerback combinations in the league with seniors Justin Silva and Donovan Carter back in the fold this year. With a season of experience playing together, it will be tough for teams to find ways to get by the defense anchored by that duo.
While defense remains a top priority for the Big Red, that doesn’t mean North isn’t a dangerous team in the attacking third. As they’ve shown over the past two seasons, speed can kill. Relying on the counterattack and set pieces for the majority of their offensive chances, North brings back senior forward Matt Conley (one goal, five assists) to try and beat defenses with his speed and skill. Junior Connor Ward will have a lot to say about the pace the Rocketeers play at as he orchestrates the team from the center of the pitch.
“With an abbreviated season and a large senior class, we hope to challenge OA for the league title,” Burgess said. “This will obviously be a huge challenge but our defense will be tough to breakdown and you can’t lose if the other team does not score.”
2019 Record: 15-4-0 2019 Finish: Reached D2 South Semifinal Coach: John Barata
Oliver Ames has reached the D2 State Final three times since 2014 and with a large group of experienced and skilled players back from last year’s team that went 15-4, another trip to the finals might have been in the cards for 2020. But with postseason canceled due to COVID-19, the Tigers are looking to make as big of an impact as they can.
After a four-year stint in the Kelley-Rex, one that included a pair of division titles (2017 and 2019), the Tigers are back in the Davenport division where they won five titles in the first six years after the Hockomock split. OA brings back nine players that either started or saw a good amount of minutes on the pitch last year, highlighted by HockomockSports Best XI selections Colin Milliken, Brady deVos, and Kevin Louhis. Milliken will help the Tigers transition from defense to offense from his center mid spot, Louhis will be a go-to option on the offensive end, and deVos is back to anchor the defense for the second straight season.
The Tigers will have plenty of options to go along with Milliken (10 goals, 14 assists) and Louhis (4 goals, 9 assists) in the attacking third. Jimmy Keane (six goals, one assist) bolsters the midfield while Anthony DaCosta (six goals, one assist) has improved each of the past two seasons and will be a handful for opposing defenses. Senior Matthew Nikiciuk really emerged as a force in the middle of the pitch last season and will be a big part of the offense, especially through set pieces. Both Mathias Taylor and Dillon Cupples burst onto the scene a year ago and will be in the mix as the Tigers push forward.
Senior goalie Drew Nickla returns in net after a strong year in 2019. The Tigers graduated the most from the defensive unit so the early challenge will be developing chemistry quickly in the backline. Head coach John Barata is also looking for Ben Cohen, Michael Haikal, and Hector Bucio as viable options for the Tigers while sophomore Jake Williams and freshmen Ryan Linhares, Joey Carney, and Diego Rivera are new faces to keep an eye out for.
“We are looking forward to competing this fall and enjoying the opportunity to grow as people and players,” Barata said. “This is a unique situation for a very unique group of players and we are going to make the best of it and play the best soccer we can. These young men are fantastic and we are going to have a great time this season regardless of the on field results…but we hope to have a few of those too!”
2019 Record: 6-7-5 2019 Finish: Missed playoffs Coach: Scott Nathan
The Eagles enter the 2020 campaign with a chip on their shoulder, coming up just one point shy of the state tournament a year ago. While Sharon can’t make up for that with a tournament appearance this year with the playoffs canceled due to COVID-19, the Eagles can certainly make some noise while challenging for the Davenport division title.
Sharon said goodbye to a handful of experienced veterans including Michael Baur, Brian Higgins, and Isaiah Stessman, but first-year head coach Scott Nathan has a group of proven players plus a bunch of news faces eager to make their mark. Senior captain Bryce Nathan and junior captain James Zhang will lead the way both on and off the pitch this year as the Eagles compete for the Davenport crown.
Bryce Nathan is one of the most versatile players in the league, playing anywhere from defense to striker during his tenure with the Eagles. Zhang, fresh off an impressive sophomore campaign, is very confident with the ball at his feet and does a nice job distributing from the center of the pitch. Sophomore Matthew Baur is back in goal after getting a varsity season under his belt. Rhys Davis and Brandon Mauricio highlight a list of returners defensively while Coby Jacobson, Samid Khandaker, Adam Landstein, Aaron Livshin, and Daniel Zagoren are all back with varsity experience as well.
The Eagles will focus on a sound defense first before transitioning into offense. Patience will be key this year as Sharon looks to make the most of each opportunity as they push forward. Brady Daylor, Malachi Diaz, Adam Eastman, Daniel Fishman, Amjad Kordab, Jack Landstein, Rohan Prakash, Elliot Pototsky Nicholas Rincon, Aaron Tamkin, Jeffrey Xiang, and Tony Yang are new to the varsity level and will be looking to make an impact on the pitch for the Eagles in 2020.
“The game will be different…for players, coaches, referees, and fans,” Scott Nathan said. “I am just happy for the boys that they have the opportunity to play the game they love!”
2019 Record: 3-13-2 2019 Finish: Missed playoffs Coach: Jon Grant
With a year of experience under coach Jon Grant, the Black Knights are aiming to have a bounce back year and compete with the top teams in the Davenport division.
There were plenty of bumps in the road during the 2019 season but Stoughton certainly showed some bright spots, including wins over Mansfield and Canton. Now the Black Knights will try to compete in each game and string some results together. Captain Nolan Gerome returns in goal for Stoughton and is among the best keepers in the league. Opposing head coaches have raved about saves Gerome has made over the past couple of seasons and he will be the anchor of the Black Knights’ defensive unit.
Playing in front of Gerome will be senior captain Ryan Sears and junior Owen Roddy, who both played valuable minutes last year. With a good amount of experience and skill in the back, Stoughton is hoping defense will be a cornerstone for the 2020 season. Grant is looking for Rhuan Carvalho to be a top playmaker for the Black Knights, distributing from the center of the pitch to create some offensive chances.
“Our goal for this year to improve on last season,” Grant said. “This year the players came in to the short season fairly well conditioned and with a great attitude. All the players are so grateful to have this opportunity to be back out on the field. This will definitely help us in this short season.”
2019 Record: 2-9-7 2019 Finish: Missed playoffs Coach: Taylor Whitters
It’s easy to look at Taunton’s record from a season ago and make assumptions, but upon further review, the Tigers were in just about every game they played. Five of the nine losses were decided by just one goal and the Tigers had a league-high seven draws; one goal either way and the Tigers were that close to a spot in the tournament. It goes to show how competitive the league was and how important each goal is.
With a strong nucleus of players back from last year’s squad, the playoffs wouldn’t have been such a far reach for Taunton this season. But with the postseason not in play, the Tigers will shift focus on being a darkhorse in the Kelley-Rex division title hunt. The new modifications will make it tough for all teams when it comes to defending, but it will also benefit something that Taunton has plenty of: speed. The Tigers plan on utilizing their pace on both ends of the pitch, getting behind the defense on one end while using their speed defensively to fend off opposing offenses.
Taunton will be strong up the middle with senior Travis Nunes back in the heart of the pitch and sophomore Riley Rebello back to anchor the defense. Senior Hunter Cabral will give the Tigers flexibility by playing in both the midfield and up front. Head coach Taylor Whitters is looking for sophomores Joseph Renquinha Jr., Aidden Fitting, Quincy Jones-Sylvia, Jonathan Trinh, and Nathan Keenan to all be in the mix this season.
“Despite everything that has occurred in recent months, we have one of the most versatile and technically sound teams that Taunton High School Boys Soccer has seen in a long time,” Whitters said. “This group of young men have the number one factor in the success of any team: chemistry. They have the willingness to play for the team, not for themselves. I feel with their talents, abilities, and desire to work together as a unit, we will be a team to watch in our division this season.”