Winning streak keeps post season hopes alive
Published in the October 19, 2018 edition
By JENNIFER GENTILE
MELROSE—Throughout this fall season, the Melrose Red Raider soccer team has led a quiet but stealth campaign towards qualifying for a post season. Thanks to a three-game winning streak, Melrose has improved their record to 5-4-3 and, with three games to go, could clinch a playoff spot in the Div. 3 North field.
On Tuesday, Melrose hosted the Stoneham Spartans at a sunny West Knoll Field in Melrose and clinched an exciting 4-1 victory. It was an offensive bonanza for the Red Raiders, who scored on the opening drive of the game when John Lecomte found the net on an unassisted goal twelve seconds into the game, to give Melrose a 1-0 lead they wouldn’t lose.
Following that goal, Melrose maintained ball control and saw numerous shots to the net by Fabrice Francois and Cam Rosnov. Red Raider defense virtually shut down any offensive attempt by Stoneham, who made their first shot at net (and missed) ten minutes into the contest.
It became a 2-0 game when Melrose’s Parker Thorton scored on a Lecomte assist. The Red Raiders threatened again when Francois nearly found the net but was denied thanks to a solid save by the Stoneham goal keeper. But at 12:15 Francois scored for good and it was a 3-0 game, with Melrose goalie Ethan Peete still holding the shoutout.
Melrose held that lead going into halftime, and while they gave up one goal in the second half, they made it a 4-1 game when Rob Wiesen scored on an assist by Redouane Drif. That would be the final score as the clock drained.
The Red Raiders’ winning streak began on Monday, Oct. 8 when they celebrated Columbus Day with a 1-0 shutout over Winchester in a defensive gem. Melrose goalie Ethan Peet earned a shutout at the net and senior Fabrice Francois scored the game-winning goal. They followed that victory up with a key league win over Wilmington, 3-0 on Wednesday, Oct. 10 on the road at Wilmington High. Scoring for Melrose was Rob Weisen (Anthony Bilbilllian assist) Fabrice Francois (Lecomte assist) and Anthony Bilbillian (Cam Rosnov assist).
Melrose coach Dean Serino credited his team for their winning ways. “This team is able to focus at the task at hand in the present. They work hard and focus on constant improvement every day.”
The celebration doesn’t stop for the Red Raiders. On Monday, they will host Senior Night at Fred Green Field in Melrose at 6:30 prior to their 7:00 p.m. game against Wakefield.
Melrose @ Watertown 5:30
v. Wakefield (Fred Green Field), 7
@ Burlington, 4