Soccer: Frontier takes down Westfield Tech in WMass Class B quarters

Chanmin Son and the Frontier boys soccer team picked up a 5-1 win over Westfield Tech on WE

Chanmin Son and the Frontier boys soccer team picked up a 5-1 win over Westfield Tech on WE STAFF PHOTO/JEFF LAJOIE

By BRADYN COTE

Staff Intern

Published: 10-25-2023 9:12 PM

WESTFIELD — It was an explosive second half from the Frontier boys soccer team that led to a 5-1 win in the Western Mass. Class B quarterfinals over Westfield Tech Wednesday at Jachym Field.

Despite playing on the road against a higher-seeded team, No. 6 Frontier (16-1) struck first 14 minutes into the game. Chanhee Son was able to dish the ball across the goal giving Nico Fasulo the green light to fire the ball into the right side of the net to put his team on the board 1-0.

“It was nice to get that first breakthrough,” said Son. “To always score first is a good feeling to get the relief from a tie.”

Holding the lead for a mere 10 minutes, No. 3 Westfield Tech (11-6) answered with a goal of its own as Zachary Zelazko set up teammate Sean Johnson for tally to make it 1-1.

That score held until halftime before the Redhawks struck again. To go along with his previous assist, Son was able to find the back of the net off a direct free kick 35 yards out to put Frontier up 2-1.

“I’ve been kind of dreaming about that kind of free kick for a while now so it’s nice to finally have it,” Son said.

Not even a full minute later, the Hawks dominated the field offensively, as Rosco Palmer was able to score directly in front of the goal via Max Rajballie’s assist making it 3-1.

“[Westfield’s defense] really opened up our two outsides where they were able to switch it back to the middle which opened up the rest of the field for us to get shots on goal,” Palmer said.

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Keeping pressure on the defense, it was Aiden Valderrama’s successful penalty kick at the 54-minute mark that extended Frontier’s growing lead to 4-1.

The Hawks didn’t stop there.

Ultimately putting the game away, Diego Frazier’s lengthy pass from Frontier’s back field made it untouched at Palmer's feet. With four Tigers sprinting alongside him, Palmer had no choice but to burn them out from midfield where he found himself by the goal.

With the Tigers goalie in a panic, Palmer’s kick blew past him leaving the final score 5-1.

“For us, it was just about finding a groove – trying to get back to who we are and what we know we can do and we were really struggling with that in the first half,” Frontier coach Evan Horton said. “I’m proud of my guys for being able to come back and do that.”

Advancing to the Class B semifinals, Frontier will host Belchertown (9-5-3) at this Saturday at 2 p.m.

Class B quarters

Hampshire 2, Pittsfield 1 – A scoreless first half was followed up by second-frame fireworks, as Aidan Miklasiewicz and Dan Martin each netted goals to propel the Raiders past Pittsfield.

Miklasiewicz and Aidan Moynahan picked up the assists on the two Hampshire goals, and Colin Holt tallied four saves in the win.

Belchertown 4, Taconic 0 – The No. 7 Orioles went on the road and took down No. 2 Taconic in the Class B quarterfinals.

Belchertown visits No. 6 Frontier next in the semifinals Saturday at 2 p.m.

Non-playoff games

Easthampton 1, SICS 1 – Sam Barr stopped nine shots in goal to keep the game tied and Kaden Garvey netted the only Eagles goal in a regular-season draw Wednesday afternoon.

Girls soccer

Class B quarters

Belchertown 6, Southwick 0 – Three goals in each half propelled the Orioles to a shutout win as five different players recorded a goal. Fallon Clany (two), Morghan Litz, Alexa Karabestos, Maya Tellier, and Emalee Chaisson were responsible for the goals.

Madysen LePage (two), Mia Corish, and Clancy registered assists. Jillian DeBarge (two) and Michaela Dubey (one) combined for three stops in goal for Belchertown.

Class C quarters

Drury 1, Smith Voc 0 — The Vikings went on the road and nearly took down the Blue Devils, falling in the Class C quarters on Wednesday in North Adams.

Class D quarters

Granby 2, Hoosac Valley 0 – Brenna Moreno found the back of the net both times for the Rams as they advance to the Class D semifinals. Kalli White recorded an assist.

Granby goalies Meredith Bartosz (one) Eleanor Szlosek (four) had five saves in the win.

Mount Everett 2, Hopkins 2 – The Golden Hawks watched a two-goal lead slip away and eventually fell to the Eagles in penalty kicks on Wednesday.

Ephie Vissas and Helen Vissas each tallied a goal within a minute of each other in the first half, with Helen picking up an assist on Ephie’s score. Emmalyn Schmidt was terrific in goal with 12 saves in the loss.

Non-playoff games

Gateway 3, Renaissance 0 – The Gators received two goals from Anna Sakaske and another from Kaitlyn Maynard as they cruised to a shutout win.

Alexi Bonenfant picked up the lone assist while Jayliana Rivera (five) and Jaidon Plant (two) combined for seven saves in goal in the Gateway win. The Gators will qualify for the Division 5 state tournament with a win Friday against Commerce.