, Salem, MA


November 14, 2013

Final item on Masco soccer's to-do list: win state title tonight

The Masconomet boys soccer team started its 2013 season with three goals in mind: win the Cape Ann League Large championship, keep its opponents, on average, under a goal a game; and the ultimate prize — take home a state title.

Most teams would be satisfied with two out of the three, but not the Chieftains.

Instead, after crossing the first two items off their list, their main focus has become tonight’s Division 2 state championship game at Manning Field in Lynn (7:15 p.m.) against upstart Walpole.

“We’re one game away from achieving all three goals and we know that it’s going to be 80 minutes of war (tonight), but we’re ready,” said the Cape Ann League’s Player of the Year, senior captain Adam Grammer.

Tonight’s game marks the third state finals game the Chieftains have been part of in the past six years. They lost to Mt. Greylock 3-2 in 2008 and most recently fell to Ludlow, 2-1, in 2011’s Division 1 title tilt. Masconomet won its only state championship in 1996.

Masconomet’s season has been nothing short of a fairy tale over the past two-and-a-half months. At 22-1-1 overall, the Chieftains’ only loss came to Division 1 powerhouse Somerville; they also managed a 1-1 tie with St. John’s Prep in the season opener.

Since that loss to Somerville in late September, Masco is riding a 17-game win streak and hasn’t given up more than two goals in a single game. It’s also worth noting that their North quarterfinals win over Danvers last week marked their 17th shutout of the year.

While the South champion Rebels (12-7-2) don’t boast the same extravagant record as Masconomet, they’ll no doubt be a formidable foe tonight. Walpole hasn’t allowed a single goal in four tournament games and topped second-seeded (and previously unbeaten) Oliver Ames for the South title Monday.

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