September 9, 2022
Danvers 0 - Masconomet 4
The Danvers Girls Varsity Soccer Team traveled to Boxford Friday afternoon to take on 1-0 Masconomet. Masco finished 1 point behind the Falcons in the standings a year ago and returned much of their starting lineup. Just about all of the local papers and pre-season rankings had the Chieftans as the favorite in the North Eastern Conference this season. The Danvers Team knew well that it would be an uphill battle both with the poor grass field conditions and the sun.
Danvers played well throughout the first 10 minutes of the game. Play was back and fourth and no team really had an advantage in play. However, about 10 minutes in, the hosts started pressing forward a bit more creating a couple of corner kick opportunities that the Falcons were able to negate. In the 17th minute, junior winger Lauren Boughner got behind the Danvers defense and was able to bury her shot in the low right corner for the 1-0 lead.
"We knew coming in that the field conditions would completely change the style of the game. We were hoping to play a little more direct, thinking the bad playing surface would hurt our passing game. We quickly found out that Masco had the same game plan, only they executed it much better than we did. They quickly found that they had a speed advantage over our defense and started getting behind our back line creating lots of chances. That first goal seemed to really deflate us. I though we were fine until then. Once they took the 1-0 lead, our body language completely changed."
Danvers seemed to struggle from that point on. Defensively they left players unmarked and the midfield connected on very little passing. Anytime the visitors got an attack started in the Masco end, the home team shut it down. Sophomore Amanda Schneider put the hosts up 2-0 in the 26th minutes. The back breaker came 2 minutes later with senior captain, Taylor Bovardi scoring to make it 3-0 at halftime.
"That 3rd goal was the killer. We seemed overwhelmed at that point. I told the girls that we were making it far too easy for Masco and they were certainly taking advantage. I asked the girls to just compete in the second half and see if we could make a game of it."
Danvers switched to a more midfield heavy formation for the second half to try and stop the strength of the Masco middle. Some adjustments were made defensively as well with Ellie Anderson, Teagan Price and Addie McCarty all adding more speed to the back line. The Falcons looked more balanced but had less of an attack, managing only 3 shots on net in the second frame. Boughner registered her second goal of the game only 3 minutes into the half and that pretty much sealed the fate of the Falcons. Senior Captain and goalkeeper, Emily Goddard made several big stops to keep the lead at 4. Senior Captain, Mikayla Shaffaval played all 80 minutes at center back and was a warrior on the field.
"I liked the energy of junior Krysta Zamejtis and freshman Lila Doucette. But we just weren't able to generate anything dangerous in their end of the field. Masco played like a very experienced team. I'm not making any excuses because we just didn't play well today. There were times when we had 4 freshmen and a sophomore on the field at the same time. Our younger players are very talented, but this was a high level opponent and it may take us some time to adjust to that. This was our program's worst loss in over 32 years and I'm sure all the other teams in the league were smiling today. I know that the girls are going to remember this loss for a long time and hopefully we can use it as motivation and realize that nothing is going to be given to us. We'll put in the work and become a better team because of it."
The Falcons, now 1-1 will travel to Gloucester Monday night to try and get back on track.