by Ken Brown
DANVILLE – In what has been a spirited rivalry between head coach Peter Stratman’s upstart squads at Cabot and Twinfield and Danville over the years, turned into David vs. Goliath last week as the Twinfield-Cabot boys’ soccer team dominated the Bears in both team’s season opener.
Freshman Tej Stewart introduced himself to varsity soccer in a big way over the weekend, finding the back of the net five times to lead the Trojans to a dominating 13-0 road win over Danville. Sophomore Dashan Eddleman got into the scoring action as well with a hat trick of his own and two assists and freshman Sam McLane added a pair of goals and an assist.
“We had a great team win. I was proud of the boys’ discipline in moving the ball and controlling possession,” said Stratman. “We were able to get our younger players into the match in the second half to get some important game experience and they stepped up and played great!,” added Stratman.
Returning leading goal scorer Meles Gouge picked right up where he left off after a sensational sophomore campaign that earned him All-State honors, scoring three times and assisting on three others in the rout. Neil Alexander and his talented backline earned the shutout for the Trojans, while Denver Lindstrom made seven stops in the loss for Danville.
“Our defensive line did well to keep Danville contained with some impressive play by Dominick Hale, Silas Robbins, Declan O’Connor, and Cooper Bernatchy. I thought the boys did a nice job of playing restrained. Contrary to the final tally, we were never trying to run up the score, with the core of our freshman playing most of the match. Danville played tough and their players did a great job of never giving up. Lindstrom did a fantastic job in net for them and came up with some impressive saves,” said Stratman.
Stratman’s squad set a school record with eleven wins last season, making it to the Division IV Final Four for the first time in 21 years. He believes this is one of his most talented teams top to bottom in all of his seasons at the helm at Cabot and Twinfield and they look poised to make some serious noise once again in the division as they enter their second season in the highly competitive Mountain League.
“We’re very fortunate to have a deep squad this year with a nucleus of returning starters and a talented freshmen crew. It was a great start to the season and the boys are committed to working hard to come together as a team,” said Stratman.
Twinfield-Cabot will host Oxbow in their home opener at Cabot Recreation Field on Wednesday before hitting the road for a divisional match-up against Blue Mountain on Saturday. They will face their biggest test of the season next Tuesday when they welcome Burke Mountain Academy to Marshfield.