Hyde School: 2
Cambridge School of Weston: 1
The Cambridge School of Weston traveled to Bath on Wednesday to play in the quarter-final match for the NEPSAC New England Class D tournament. The game was played on the turf field under mostly sunny skies with moderate northwest winds and cold temperatures.
The excitement that accompanies post season play was palatable from the first whistle. Both teams had experienced successful seasons and were ready to play their best soccer. The Phoenix set the tone early with crisp passing and ball movement from midfields Kiefer Cundy`15 and Cole Faulkner`15. They were able to spread the ball out wide to wingers Wyatt Lichtenger`14 on the left and Ben Mooney`16 on the right. They did their job and worked the ball down the flank, generating scoring opportunities for strikers Wilson MacMillan`14 and Akim Sanni`15. For much of the first half, play was back and forth, with each team testing the defensive strength of the other. However, strong defensive play by Andrew Davis`15, Dow Drukker`15, Eric Stone`14 and David Wu`15 allowed the Phoenix to not only shut down the opponents attacking efforts, but also maintain possession and counter attack. At the end of the first half the score was 0-0.
The Hyde lads came out in the second half with renewed vigor, determined to put their opponents under. A couple of tactical changes; movingMacMillan`14 to midfield, Mooney`16 up top and Faullkner`15 out to the right wing, proved fruitful in terms of generating more scoring chances. As the second half unfolded the Phoenix had multiple shots on goal, their keeper made some great saves, more than one went off the woodwork, but ultimately none found the back of the net. CSW packed it in and weathered the onslaught, as the ball rarely left their defensive end of the field. With less than 5 minutes left in the game, the opponents had a chance to go ahead on a nicely placed shot, but keeper Noah Horning`15 dove on the ball blocking its entry into the goal. Hyde regained possession for the remaining minutes, but the clock wound down and the game was forced into overtime.
Both overtime periods were much the same as the second half. That is to say that, Hyde dominated possession and had multiple shots, but could not find the back of the goal. This resulted in the need to go to a Penalty Kick shootout to determine a winner.
CSW won the coin toss and shot first. They scored on the first PK to go up 1-0. Kiefer Cundy`15 shot first for Hyde but failed to convert. The CSW player hit the post on their second shot to leave the score 1-0 in their favor when Andrew Davis`15 had his turn. Davis`15 buried his PK to tie it 1-1. CSW had a chance to break the tie with their 3rd player, but keeper Noah Horning`15 was having none of it, making a great save to keep it even. Wilson MacMillan`14 took Hyde’s 3rd PK and converted on a corker of a shot to put the Phoenix up 2-1. Noah Horning`15 came up huge and saved the shot from their 4th PK to keep it 2-1. Next, Hyde’s Eric Stone`15 made a beautiful PK that few keepers would have been able to save, but somehow the CSW keeper did just that, and the score remained 2-1. As the 5th CSW player readied for his PK, Horning`15 had already made an astounding two saves. However, he was not done yet. He saved the shot, making it unnecessary for Hyde to send a 5th player to the line. With this dramatic win, Hyde advances to the semi-finals. This match will be played at Waring School in Beverly MA. The game will start at 1:00 on Saturday.