- Written by Mike Halloran
- Published: 11 November 2009
Coach John Tocci claimed before the year started that he would have one of the best defensive teams around. Tuesday nightâ€™s game with Medway proved the Duxbury coach knows what he is talking about.
Registering their second straight shutout of the post-season and 12th of the year, thefifth-seeded Dragons (14-1-5) traveled to Medway and hung a 3-0 loss on the fourth-seeded Mustangs (14-4-1) to advance to Saturdayâ€™s semifinals against the winner of Sandwich/Medfield.
The game will be played in Taunton, but no starting time had been established at press time.
Tuesday nightâ€™s game saw Medway come out with guns blazing, as they sent a shot across the bow of goaltender Max Cote in the first 20 seconds and followed it with a shot off the rebound that just missed the left post.
The Mustangs dominated for most of the first 25 minutes, as the hosts carried play with a corner and two blasts over the crossbar. It wasnâ€™t until the 17:13 mark that Duxbury got its first serious scoring bid when Tommy Drummy put his head on a shot, forcing goalkeeper Nolan Lynch to come up with a save.
Momentum started to swing for Duxbury, as Dan Sangster unloaded a direct kick from 30 yards out and Drummy beat Nolan, before sending his shot over the crossbar.
The opportunities now became more frequent, with Sangster sending a grass-cutter on net that Lynch dove to save.
With under two minutes to go in the half senior Greg Loreaux controlled the ball in midfield and sent a pass on the ground to senior Jimmy Landry at the top of the box. Landry beat his man and shot under the diving Lynch to send the Dragons into halftime with a 1-0 lead.
Tocci said it all during the intermission, as he preached to his troops that 40 solid minutes of play would deflate the Mustangs as the game went on. Once again he was a prophet.
The Dragonsâ€™ confidence was sky-high, as they carried the play to start the second half.
Just seven minutes into the action senior Pat Charland sent a 35-yard direct kick into the box, where Drummy elevated over the defense and headed the ball backwards, perfectly placing it past the out-stretched arms of Lynch before settling into the right-hand corner of the net.
Duxbury was now in control and continued to frustrate the Mustangs with their stingy defense that cleared the ball every time it came into the Dragonâ€™s end.
Duxbury could now afford to pick their spots when to make a rush.
That moment came with 12:31 remaining when senior Justin McElduff trapped a David Hemingway throw-in and laid the ball off to Drummy. The senior turned and fired on Lynch, who saved the in-close blast, only to have Landry waiting to pop in the rebound for his second of the game and put the final nail in the Medway coffin.
â€œYou watch the first 25 minutes of that game and I was already to write down my penalty-kick shooters,â€ said Tocci. â€œI told my assistant coach that whoever scores the first goal will make the other team struggle. We didnâ€™t pack it in because our strategy is to attack. We attacked and attacked and all those goals were beautiful. I hope we are now out of our funk where we didnâ€™t hustle for the last three weeks. We didnâ€™t see any of that tonight. All we saw was hustle and teamwork.â€