By Jean DePlacido
---- — MIDDLETON — What a difference having a game under their belts made for the Bishop Fenwick boys soccer team.
Just one day after being blanked by Beverly, the Crusaders were on the other side in a 9-0 victory of host North Shore Tech/Essex Aggie.
This was the first game of the season for the young North Shore Tech Hawks, who have a new coach and are trying to learn a new system.
“We’re very young and are trying to jell together,” said coach Joel Spruance. “We have a few freshmen starting and all the players are still learning the new system, but I was pleased the way all our guys kept their composure. We’ve got things to work on before we get into our league schedule.
“It’s exciting to play a team like Bishop Fenwick. They’re good ... and that’s the kind of team we want to be. I saw some good things out there as well as the areas we have to work on.”
Fenwick wasted little time getting on the board after Rishad DeSilva was tripped in the box as Jimmy Brophy drilled a shot past Hawk goalie Jeremy Smalley for a quick 1-0 lead. Iftimi Arapi scored the first of his two goals (with DeSliva assisting) midway through the first half for a 2-0 advantage, and Greg Enos set up sophomore Troy Belleville for the first of his two scores for a 3-0 lead in a half that Fenwick totally dominated.
“This is a good confidence builder,” said Arapi, one of five Crusader captains. “We lost our confidence in the Beverly game (a 4-0 loss) nd it’s important to get it back.”
Fenwick coach Nick Padovani had a chance to get a good look at all his players yesterday afternoon and was especially pleased with the underclassmen.
“We grew a little today — and we really needed it,” said Padovani. “Beverly is a much bigger, stronger team than North Shore Tech. I don’t want to take anything away from this team, but they were easier for us to handle. We scored early, and that was important because we needed to get our confidence up. We were very down after that loss, and I liked what I saw from a lot of the young guys.”
Fenwick kept the pressure on and added three quick goals by captain Alex Baker, Arapi (on a penalty shot) and Belleville early in the second half. Belleville made a nifty move to get in alone before lifting the ball into the left corner.
Sophomore Sam Desmarais was the smallest player on the field, but also one of the hardest workers. His hustle paid off with a goal. Junior Conner Alexander and freshman Shawn Carlson also found the back of the net for Bishop Fenwick.
“We have a lot of seniors on this team (11) and a lot of leadership,” said Enos, one of the Crusader captains. “Today a lot of our young guys came through. Desmarais is always in there working; it was good to see him score.”
Fenwick goalie Ryan Trott was only called upon to make a few saves as his defense did a good job breaking up threats. His best stop was a diving grab to smother a shot by sophomore Josh Zwiercan in the first half.
“Josh is good up top, and he made some nice runs,” said Spruance. “He’s got speed. Ryan Clement and Nathan Espinal were strong on defense, and Dylan Petit (midfielder) played well.”