By JENNIFER GENTILE
MELROSE — The Melrose Lady Raider soccer team went 2-3 in league play this week after wins against Burlington and Stoneham. On Tuesday the Lady Raiders traveled to Red Devil territory and beat Burlington,1-0.
After a scoreless tie Melrose sophomore Erin Reardon scored the decisive goal to lift Melrose. “Erin had a great game for us, we called her up from junior varsity and she will stay here,” confirms her coach, Bill DeSimone.
The coach credits solid defense by their net minder Shalyn McCarthy, who earned the shutout, along with terrific outside defense from Melrose’s Lauren Connolly and Kiere Sixsmith. “Both Lauren and Kiere had outstanding games for us on defense, they used body contact and were as aggressive as we needed,” comments DeSimone.
Overall, Melrose sits at 2-4 and 2-1 in league play, with four points collected toward tournament play. Their leading scorers to date have been Jackie Pereira and Muna Asia. Pereira leads in the early season with three goals followed by Asia’s two while Erin Reardon has one. Assists have come courtesy of Lauren Connolly, Maddie Oro, Aevery Smith (2), Shannon Jones and Olivia Smith.
But being 2-1 in the Middlesex Freedom League and second to undefeated Wilmington is a good place to be.
“Our goal is the same, to collect 18 points toward tournament. Should we take first or second place in the Freedom League we can also make tournament. So these league games are important and our objective is to win them,” says DeSimone.
Melrose will continue those all-important Freedom League games this week with a meeting against Wakefield on Wednesday (post deadline), a non-league game against Malden on Saturday at 11 a.m. at Pine Banks and a home game against Watertown Tuesday night under the lights at Fred Green Field at 7 p.m.