Two goals by freshmen fuel Raiders’ win over Whittier
Watertown boys' soccer team to play Monday in MIAA Division 3 North quarterfinals
November 4, 2017862 Views
The Watertown High boys’ soccer team won its first-round game of the MIAA playoffs Friday, beating Whittier Tech, 4-0, at Victory Field. It was a great performance all around as every player played very well from the defensive end to the offensive end.
Watertown started the game with very high intensity as the Raiders kept the ball moving around a lot in the opponent’s half. The Raiders had great passing and kept the ball away from Whittier while managing to capitalize with three goals in the first half.
The first goal came from freshman Nicholas Dipace. He had a great attack, which led to a rebound and he was able to capitalize on the goal very smoothly.
“It felt really nice,” said Nicholas. “I’m trying my best to keep showing what I’m capable of.”
Moments after, as Watertown kept attacking with high intensity, Caiden Kiani, another freshman had a clean touch to get the ball in the back of the net, with an assist from Jose Mendoza.
“It felt extremely special and I was really surprised,” said Caiden.
Watertown had many great chances in the first half, getting off 11 shots. Near the end of the half, senior captain Robert Danielian had a fantastic volley with his left foot off an amazing pass from Chris Iannetta.
Watertown’s defense was incredible as Whittier only ended up with two shots in the entire game. Captain Alex Abrahamyan led the defense in front of goalie Sergio Salas. Included in that were stunning games from Luke Murphy and Andrew Koutroukas to help support Alex on the defensive end.
Watertown’s midfielders controlled the game by far. Jafiah Edwards, Ruben Sara, Jose Mendoza, Robert Danielian, and Samuel Deossa did a good job passing the ball around and finding the open space.
Watertown’s second half was even better.
Watertown came up with multiple attacks as Akif Yagcioglu, Robert Danielian, Jose Mendoza, and Samuel Deossa worked well with each other, which resulted in another goal to secure the win. The goal came off of Akif’s spectacular dribbling and cutting around players, which led to a nice touch to Samuel, which led to a superb finish to the left hand side of the keeper.
At the end of the game, Watertown had come up with 21 shots to two by Whittier.
This game could arguably have been the Raiders’ best game of the season.
“We’ve been training really hard,’’ said Watertown coach Frank Cacia. “It starts all the way back in the summer with all the hard work. We’ve been playing good soccer and having very good training sessions.”
The Raiders (12-6-1), the fifth seed in Division 3 North, advance to the quarterfinals and a game Monday, Nov. 6, against the winner of Saturday’s game between No. 4 Newburyport (8-3-6) and 13th seed Bedford (6-10-2).
Alex Abrahamyan, a senior captain, was asked how it felt to help leading the team to the next round.
“It was good,” he said. “I’ve been expecting this moment for a while in high school, but I’m excited.”
After getting two goals by freshmen in the tourney opener, there seems to be a bright future for the WHS team.
“I’m looking for [the freshmen] to fit in the holes,” the coach said. “We’re going to be losing some seniors and I’m really sad. It’s a great senior class, but I know that we have younger players that can fill right in.”
For the seniors like Robert Danielian, playing in their last MIAA tourney, there were a lot of mixed emotions.
“Oh man, it flew by and I wouldn’t want to spend it with any other team, but we got a long way to go,” he said.
“I worked since my freshmen year. I remember when I started this there were some really good players my freshmen year and I always looked up to them and always worked hard to get to where they were.”
Samuel Deossa, a sophomore, knows what it takes.
“Just getting better and better everyday,” he said. “Working hard for my team doing the best I can.”
Senior goalie Sergio Salas had some advice for the younger players.
“They should always train every single day and work hard and be dedicated and not let any distractions get the best of them,” he said.
–Nov. 3, 2017–
Kenan Canca is a member of the Raider Times staff.