Boys Varsity Responds Strong Against Herget Foes

Boys Varsity Responds Strong Against Herget Foes

Michael Greulich

After a rocky start to the season (with 2 tough losses), Walpole Boys Soccer has turned their season around with 3 consecutive victories against teams in the bottom half of the Bay State Conference.  Although they played weaker teams, these victories should not be overlooked, for they showed the traits often found in great teams — resiliency.  With two  night games (against Milton and Dedham) and one afternoon game (against Norwood), the Rebels’ postseason hope has been revitalized by their recent resilient play.

Walpole Boys Soccer played their first night game of the year in Milton on September 19, and it was thrilling to say the least.  Three of Walpole’s elite  players — senior Nolan Murray, senior Harvest Perez and junior Bobby Ivatts — were all out with injuries.  With two starting spots open, junior Bobby Rabaioli and sophomore Chris Gallivan stepped up for their first career starts.

The game got off to a fast paced start, yet neither team was able to score.  As the first half wore on, Walpole started to dominate possession, but still couldn’t put the ball in the back of the net.  The two teams went into half time scoreless, despite multiple opportunities for both teams.

The second half started and the two teams picked up right where they had left off, neither able to et a good shot on goal.  Milton scored quickly though after a throw-in dropped the ball directly in front of the goal.  The Rebels were 2-2, but both of their wins had come only when the other team didn’t score.  When the other team scored first, the Rebels were 0-2.  As the game wore on and the play clock wound down, it seemed as though the boys would not be breaking this streak.  But, with 8 minutes left Junior Maurice Young scored with a header off of a free kick from John Lochhead and then again with 4 minutes left to make the score 2-1 for Walpole.

The game was far from over though as Milton went on the attack for the last 4 minutes.  Thanks to three incredible saves in a row by junior goalkeeper Peter Hoegler, Milton’s efforts were fruitless.  The win was not only thrilling to watch, but also a very important win for the Rebels because it was their first comeback win of the year.

Now with a winning record and their first comeback win under their belt, the boys confidently played their first home game under the lights against Dedham.  Everything clicked for the Rebels, as they scored fifteen minutes in and the again right before halftime.  The boys did not come off the attack as the second half started, as the whole team got to see action.  The Rebels scored 3 more time to defeat Dedham 5-0 in their first home games under the lights of the year.

The Rebels came off of their win over Dedham with another impressive victory over division rivals Norwood.  The Mustangs, led by Tyler Gonzalez, showed an impressive attack against the Rebels strong defense but were unable to score.  The only goal of the game came half way through the first half off of the head of junior Jack Stedman.  Peter Hoegler recorded his forth shutout of the year as the boys defeated Norwood 1-0.

After starting off their season 2-2, the boys picked up three wins in a row, bringing them back to the top of the Herget and second in the Bay State Conference. Despite a rocky start to their season, the Rebels have resumed their role as a dominant presence in the league.