Trojans Get Healthy for Playoff Run

by Ken Brown

CRAFTSBURY – The Twinfield-Cabot boys’ soccer team snapped a two game losing streak with a win over Craftsbury Academy (CA) last week, but more importantly had a fully healthy roster for the first time in a month as they ready for a deep playoff run in the upcoming Division IV playoffs.

Freshman Tej Stewart scored two goals to lead the Trojans to a 5-2 road win over CA last Wednesday to wrap up both teams’ regular season. The Trojans took a 2-0 edge into the break and would tack on with goals from Sam McLane, Darshan Eddleman, and Meles Gouge to put the match out of reach. Silas Hunt scored both goals for the Chargers as they fell to 3-11. Neil Alexander made one stop for the Trojans as they finished the regular season at 9-4. It was the first time head coach Peter Stratman had his full complement of weapons at his disposal for a match in weeks.

“It was really nice to be able to play a match with our full roster again and it took the guys a little bit to get back into sync with each other. There were moments where we moved the ball really well with speed, but other times we were slow and kind of sloppy. We made a few mistakes in the back, but also connected on a string of really nice passes at times and I suspect it will take some time for them to find their rhythm again,” said Stratman.

Stratman led Twinfield-Cabot to their first Division IV Final Four in 21 years last fall, narrowly losing to eventual state champion Mount St. Joseph’s Academy 3-2. The Trojans are 37-16-1 since he took over the program in 2019 and his talented squad has a chance to surpass the school record (11 wins) that they set just last season. The road back to the Final Four will be through a pair of home matches in Marshfield for the Trojans, but Stratman isn’t looking any farther ahead than his team’s first round rematch with Craftsbury Academy this week.

“Soccer is a beautiful game where anything can happen on any given day. I’ve seen it happen, so we are focused primarily on preparing for Craftsbury. They have some talented young players, they play physical, and their goalkeeper did a nice job of keeping our match close. I like the side of the bracket we are on, but there are some very talented teams in our division. It is important that we build confidence and momentum one match at a time. We are excited for the opportunity to play in front of our home crowd and the atmosphere should be great,” said Stratman.

The Trojans are the fourth ranked team in the division and will host CA on Wednesday in the first round of the tournament. If they advance they would host the winner of No. 5 Twin Valley vs. No. 12 Leland & Gray. That quarterfinal match would take place in Marshfield on Saturday afternoon.