17-0 Boys’ Soccer rallies to win prize in PKs

Undefeated Boys’ soccer wraps up an unbelievable regular season 

The Oakmont Regional High Boys’ soccer has finished their regular season and the Central Mass Tournament undefeated after two close, nail-biting games. Athletic Director Eric Dawley and other seasoned Spartans rank this contest among the most exciting Oakmont contests ever.

The boys, who were the 1 seed, started off the tournament with a close 3-2 win over the 8-seed Auburn Rockets; they were down 2-0 in the first half after a slow and sluggish start to the game. They came back fired up in the second half, with senior Micheal Bedard scoring first and bringing energy back to the team and the student section. The boys got a crucial penalty kick with 3 minutes left in the game and junior Gael Vera stepped up and coolly put it in the back of the net to tie it up. This gave all the energy to the boys, while draining all the energy out of Auburn. Four minutes into the 5-minute overtime,  junior Cam Cormier powered it past the Auburn goalie to send the stands and team into a frenzy. 

The second game of the tourney, they played Keefe Tech. The Spartans started out strong and put a goal away quickly and didn’t let up, shutting down the Keefe tech strikers – not letting any shots on net. In the second half, the boys came out firing and put away 3 goals in 12 minutes to make sure the Broncos had no chance of making a comeback.

The boys had to travel down to Nashoba for a highly anticipated finals game against the 2 seed, Blackstone Valley Tech: they started off slow, as Blackstone scored in the opening two minutes. Then, Cam Cormier answered back with a goal of his own two minutes later. The boys faced adversity as Blackstone scored two goals to go up 3-1 with a little over 20 minutes left in the first half. After those two goals by Valley and twenty minutes remaining in the half, Coach Stiles called a timeout and tried to regroup the team, and fired them up, telling them they had 60 minutes left and we can easily get two back.

Senior captain Micheal Bedard came up huge for the team as he put away two goals in those 20 remaining minutes to even it up before the half – one header and one gritty crossbar bouncer.  The boys started off the second half under constant pressure from Valley who ultimately scored two goals to go up again by 2 with 10 minutes left in the game. The boys got another inspirational pep talk from Coach Stiles. They kept up their style of play where they have quick crisp passing keeping the other team on their heels. Junior Gael got tripped up in the box with 8 minutes left and put another penalty kick away for the Spartans, who scrambled to get the ball back and quickly get the game started again with them having all the momentum. With under 40 seconds left in the game, down 1, the boys sent up everyone into the box trying to get a goal off a corner kick. Junior Kaden Yoder put in a great ball into the box and found team-leading goal-scoring Gael Vera who headed it and put it in the back of the net with 3 seconds remaining as the Spartan faithful who traveled to watch erupted with joy.

Overtime came and went as both teams had equal amounts of chances to try and win the game, but both keepers made sure it went to PKs. As the feared, penalty shootout came around, the 5 Spartans who were taking them were calm and collected. Junior Goalie Ben Forbes, who hadn’t played a minute all game, stepped into net for the shootout looking to provide the Spartans with some saves. First, two penalty kick takers for both teams scored. Valley tech stepped up to start the third round of shots and put it off the crossbar bouncing out to the 18-yard box. Kaden Yoder stepped up and calmly slotted it into the back of the net, putting pressure on the next shooter from Valley. That striker stepped up and skied it over the net as the Spartans lined up at midfield excitedly as they had a chance to make it 4-2. Junior Liam Mullane, stepped up and sadly had his kick saved by the Tech goalie.

The crucial 5th round of shootout came around and Valley Tech scored their goal, tying it up at 3 with all the pressure on Cam Cormier. He confidently knew where he was going to put the ball, so stepped up, and at the whistle, Cormier rifled it past the outstretched hands of the goalie, winning it for the Spartans. They became the first boys’ soccer team in school history to win both the league title and the tourney title. As the captains stepped up to receive the trophy with the team, the entire squad sprinted across the field to celebrate with the nutty Spartan crowd. 

The boys finished the season at 17-0-0, but the MIAA will document the two overtime games as ties, so the state tourney record will be formulated as 15-0-2. The boys await the Massachusetts State Tournament division 3 bracket to be released, but they forecast they’re either the 7 or 8 seed playing Sunday or Monday in the first round. So, come out and support the team as they look to make a deep run looking for the coveted state title trophy.


Oakmnont carries championship plague

Oakmont pushes the ball through the air. Mr. Dufour in front taking yearbook photos. (Mark)