But with just under six minutes to play, Attleboro senior Tyler Treichler got on the end of a set piece service and used his head to tuck the ball on the inside of the post and give the Bombardiers a 1-0 win in both team’s first game of the season.
As the game ticked into the 75th minute, the Bombardiers earned a free kick near the corner flag. Junior Zach White played it short, only to get it back immediately. He drove a cross to the back post and Treichler was able to jump up in a sea of players and get his head to the ball, putting it just inside the post, making it nearly impossible to stop.
“We’ve been sending the two guys from the back up for corners and set pieces because they can head the ball, so that paid off,” Attleboro head coach Peter Pereira said. “We have a good team and the kids are working hard, that’s what we we are. We’re young but we work hard.
“The freshmen are giving everything they have and that sets the tone for the other kids. We have a while to go though, this is most of the kids’ first ever game playing together because of the ages are so different. I was happy with the performance and of course the points are even more important.”
Each team had just once serious chance in the first half. Lancaster’s low free kick to the near post was deflected to freshman Michael Russo in the 8th minute, but his shot on frame went right at Canton goalie Abe Garber.
Canton nearly took the lead just seconds later off when Paul Corcoran took off down the right flank, centering a pass for Ben Waterhouse but Attleboro goalie Nick Hasenfus came off his line and just got in front.
The Bulldogs started off on the front foot in the second half, finding a chance in the 47th minute, Corcoran sent in a low cross to the near post, where Cole Duserick got a touch on but the ball spun just out of the reach for Waterhouse to get a clean shot and it slipped wide.
Canton’s Jake Verille made a nice run in the 65th minute into the final third but his shot was saved by Hasenfus. Two minutes later, White played Connor Dunn wide and his cross was met at the far post by Nick Lawrence, bit his bid back across goal went wide. Lawrence’s shot three minutes later was stopped by Garber as well.
That led to Andre going for a 50/50 ball on the right sideline, earning a free kick just by the corner. That led to White’s service and Treichler’s winner.
“Attleboro played great, I thought they they had the territory in the first half. We actually had the possession in the first half but we kept the ball in our end so it didn’t do anything for us,” Canton head coach Danny Erickson said, also praising Attleboro’s defensive effort. “They were really dangerous, keeping the ball that first half. I thought we turned it around and had the ball down their end the whole second half, they had a couple glimpses and then they took advantage of a set piece and scored a really nice goal. I don’t think he was completely open, I thought we were on him but he scored a great goal. I thought we gave them a great fight in the second half though but it’s onto the next one.”
Attleboro’s defense was bolstered by Lancaster, who has made the switch from an attacking option to a center back for his senior year. It seemed anytime that Canton had something going in the final third, Lancaster was there to cause a problem.
“Harry is doing well for us. He was playing midfield but I felt like I needed someone back there,” Pereira said. “He’s got the speed, he’s got the experience. He’s covering for everyone back there. With Treichler next to him, he’s learning with Harry too. Then we rotate four sophomores in the wings and we’re hoping they’ll do the job.”