-Submitted on behalf of the BHS Boys Varsity Soccer Team
The Bedford Boys Varsity Soccer faced major tests the last two weeks. While they did not ace them, winning two out of three put them in a position to win their unprecedented fifth consecutive DCL Foley Division title. The Buccaneers currently stand at 8-2-2 (6-2-1 within DCL league play) atop the DCL Foley Division, as they enter the final week of the regular season.
KIPP Academy (Lynn), October 11
The Bucs played a non-league match at home against KIPP Academy from Lynn and dominated the game winning 4-0. Spencer Goss started the scoring early, giving Bedford a 1-0 lead a few minutes into the match. Bedford controlled the ball for most of the half, maintaining possession and generating many scoring opportunities. At the 35 minute mark, Goss found Vivek Joseph who knocked it in for his first varsity goal, putting Bedford up 2-0 just before halftime. The second half was similar to the first, with Bedford pressing the action. In the 45th minute, Luca Melfi’s beautiful free kick found a leaping Sawyer Elliott, who headed it in for a 3-0 Bedford lead. Anirudh Kumar finished the scoring in the 72nd minute, resulting in the final 4-0 margin. It was a complete performance by the Bucs who received contributions from the entire roster. Brian Hwang and Connor Lewis applied pressure up top, Colin Viera, Wynn Sheridan, and Mihir Vaze generated Bedford scoring opportunities, and Ronan Melfi, Owen Savage, and Leo Natalizio made numerous hustle plays throughout the game. Devan Kaushik was awarded the Vince for his work in the midfield and aggressive attacks.
Concord-Carlisle, October 18
The Bucs traveled to Concord for a key matchup against DCL Thorpe Division leader Concord-Carlisle (C-C). The tall and talented Patriots, ranked 10th overall in Division 1 at the time and riding a seven game win streak, defeated Bedford 1-0. From the kickoff C-C took control, pressing the action into the Bedford defensive zone and keeping the ball there for an extended period. Goalie Ansh Aggarwal made a great save at 4 minutes, leaving him out of position with the ball bouncing to a C-C attacker whose shot was then amazingly saved by centerback Luca Melfi’s half bicycle kick, keeping the game scoreless. Aggarwal rolled an ankle soon after Melfi’s save, hobbling through the next 8 minutes. A quick ankle taping at 19 minutes allowed him to return minutes later with better mobility, and C-C immediately tested him, but he was up to the task keeping the game scoreless. The Patriots had 6 corner kicks within the first 20 minutes and continuously buzzed around the Bucs net. Bedford’s best scoring chance came at 29 minutes with a string of 4 passes, but Shae Arsenault’s shot went just wide. The Patriots were finally rewarded for their offensive pressure at 31 minutes as the Bucs were unable to clear the ball and C-C knocked it home for a 1-0 lead that remained for the rest of the half.
The early second half was more of the same with C-C in control, possessing the ball and making Bedford chase. Max Mezheritskiy’s strong defense forced a C-C attacker into a tough shot that Aggarwal was able to save at 45 minutes. The next ten minutes were relatively even with Bedford starting to turn the tide. The Bucs were awarded their first corner kick at 56 minutes but could not convert. At the 60 minute mark, there was end to end action, with neither team able to score. After a Bedford timeout at 70 minutes, the Bucs took control of the game and started to make the C-C defense work. For the net 10 minutes Bedford had their best scoring chances with multiple corner kicks and shots, but could not get the equalizer. Aggarwal was awarded the Vince for his toughness, and Mezheritskiy, Melfi, Jake Bowman, Sawyer Elliott, Akira Ung, Tomas Ou, and Miles Herzog played terrific defense in thwarting the constant C-C attack.
Newton South, October 20
With the loss to C-C still fresh, the Bucs made the trip to Newton knowing another defeat would deal a major blow to their hopes of a DCL Foley Division title. The Lions were co-leaders of the DCL Thorpe division (along with C-C, and having tied them earlier in the year), and ranked 12th overall in Division 1. Bedford was undaunted and pulled off an incredible 2-1 victory. The Bucs came out attacking from the jump and took a 1-0 lead at the 6:30 mark. Eshan Pandey’s corner kick found Spencer Goss who deftly made the pass to Christian Hill and he drilled it past the Newton goalie to put Bedford ahead. At the 12 minute mark, Tomas Ou played solid defense, thwarting a Newton scoring opportunity, and the next five minutes saw the Bucs continue their attack, but unable to capitalize. At the 20 minute mark Newton settled in and started to possess the ball more and pressure the Bedford defense. Aggarwal made a nice save at 27 minutes, and Newton continued to control the ball and generate scoring opportunities.
The Bucs maintained the 1-0 advantage into the second half, which was a relatively even affair for the first ten minutes. At 62 minutes Bedford was unable to clear the ball from in front of their net and a Newton player was able to head it in, tying the match at 1. The Lions gained the momentum and continued to press the attack for the next several minutes. However, the defense held strong with Ou, Max Mezheritskiy, Luca Melfi, and Sawyer Elliott making key stops. Soon thereafter, Spencer Goss, Owen Savage, Devan Kaushik, and Miles Herzog started to connect passes and Bedford regained momentum in the midfield and generated scoring chances. At the 77 minute mark, Newton mounted a furious attack. Aggarwal was able to make a few saves, and another shot hit the crossbar, and thus the game remained tied. Bedford immediately counterattacked leading to a corner kick, and Kaushik found Goss, whose header hit the post. Newton drove the ball back into the Bedford zone with about a minute remaining, but the Bucs cleared the ball and pressured Newton into a turnover leading to yet another Bucs corner kick. The Lions initially headed the ball out of the goalie box, but the Bucs regained control, and Sean Morrison played a beautiful touch pass to Luca Melfi who drove it into the back of the net giving Bedford the 2-1 lead. Seconds later the whistle sounded and the Bucs had the victory. Melfi was awarded the Vince for his lockdown defense and the game winning tally.
The Bucs are back in action at home for games this week: Monday October 24th vs Tewksbury at 5:00 pm (Senior Night), Thursday October 26th vs Lincoln-Sudbury at 4:30pm, and Saturday Oct 29th vs Natick at 12 noon.