Published in the October 26, 2018 edition


WAKEFIELD — Friends and family came together last night at the Galvin’s Walton Field to celebrate the seven seniors on the Wakefield High girls’ soccer team.

It was a terrific ceremony for a tremendous group of teammates.

“We’ll miss this senior class so much,” said Wakefield head coach Steph Martin. “They’ve been a great part of the program, especially the kids we’ve had the last three years.”

The three captains, Caroline Hurley, Christina LeBlanc and Brooke Lilley have been a key part of the varsity team for a long time. LeBlanc is a four-year varsity player, while Lilley and Hurley are three-year varsity members.

“They’ve been very good leaders for us all year,” said Martin. “They kept the girls focused on our goal all season. They work hard in practice and they’re good leaders on and off the field.”

Two-year varsity players Grace Collins, Sara Junta and Julia Michaud have been a steady presence in the program while Gina Barbera was an important addition to the varsity this year.

THE SENIORS and their families on Wakefield girls’ soccer Senior Night, Oct. 25, 2018. Pictured from left to right is Christina LeBlanc, Caroline Hurley, Julia Michaud, Gina Barbera, Sara Junta, Grace Collins and Brooke Lilley. (Dan Pawlowski Photo)

The Warriors didn’t hold back on their major goal for the season, even when the going got tough. On a team that relied on many young players, coach Martin credited the seniors for committing to the team and working hard every day to help the underclassmen learn what it takes to win in an extremely talented Middlesex League.

The Warriors came up short in their bid for a trip to the state tournament, but the seniors never lost their fight or their dedication to the team.

“It’s been a challenging year but they kept the focus where it needed to be and helped the younger kids buy in,” said Martin.

Wakefield hosted an undefeated Stoneham team last night. The Spartans are one of the best teams in the state but Wakefield didn’t back down, hanging tough with the visitors all game.

The Warriors’ defense knew they would be in for another tough challenge, but they didn’t back down.

Julia Michaud teamed up with a pack of juniors to provide the solid back line. Goalie Emma Lambiaso and defenders Sarah Melanson, Abby Mondello and Wini Mylan all played well.

Grace Collins did a great job on Stoneham’s star midfielders, the Caldarelli sisters.

Stoneham struck on a cross about 17 minutes in but the halftime score was a manageable 1-0.

Wakefield continued to compete in the second. Sara Junta had some good possession in the midfield and the Warriors were more precise with their passing.

Lambiaso had a nice sliding stop on a breakaway but the Spartans made it 2-0 with about 30 minutes left.

A perfect shot from Samantha Caldarelli made it 3-0 with 12 minutes left but the Warriors can easily say they played hard to the end in this one.

On a personal level for coach Martin, this group will always mean a lot to her. In her third season as head coach, Martin will have to say goodbye to a group who was also new when she started out. Especially LeBlanc, Lilley and Hurley, who were just sophomores starting their varsity careers the same as the coach.

“They’ve been a big part of my coaching career and I will certainly miss them,” said Martin. “They’re a special group. I know they will stay connected to the program, reach back and help out when they can.”

Wakefield’s final game will be on the road at Bishop Fenwick on Monday at 3:45 p.m.