EAST LONGMEADOW – Gateway’s bid for an upset in the boys’ soccer Division 4 West Sectional semifinal lasted all of 95 seconds.
Top-seeded Monson established an early 1-0 lead, tallied two goals in the first nine minutes, and cruised past No. 5 Gateway 4-0 in the Division 4 West Sectional semifinals Thursday night at East Longmeadow High School.
Michael Murphy had a hand in three of the four goals, scoring the second and fourth goals, and assisting on the team’s third, which came with 7:07 remaining in the first half.
“We ran into a buzz saw early,” Gateway coach Tim Gamble said. “They were very impressive moving the ball side to side, and controlling possession.”
Monson let down its guard momentarily after taking a three-goal lead. Gateway squeezed a shot off out front of the Mustangs’ net, but goalie Michael Tranghese made a save. The Gators collected the rebound and launched another shot toward the goal, but the defense cleared the ball away.
Monson appeared to net a goal in the early minutes of the second half, rattling the ball just inside the left post. The ball bounced around off the interior part of the post and back out. The officials failed to rule it a goal.
The apparent missed call was a moot point though when Murphy scored with exactly 30:00 left on the second-half clock.
“(Gateway goalie) Shane Mastello kept us in the game … and our seniors obviously played very well. I feel really good about (our season).”
The Gators’ coach also noted strong performances from seniors Nick Cooper, Frank Tangredi, and others.
DIVISION 3 WEST SECTIONAL SEMIFINALS
Orioles topple Rams
No. 3 Belchertown 3, No. 2 Southwick 0
Three different Belchertown players scored, and the Orioles shut out and shut down Southwick in a D3 west sectional semifinal at East Longmeadow High School.
Hayden Bennis got Belchertown started with a goal in the opening minute. Bennis then set up Bejamin LaClair for a beautiful header early in the second half.
Southwick’s Brandon Castor made a nice free run down the left sideline, launching a shot toward the opposite side of the net with about 15 minutes remaining in regulation. The ball sailed just wide.
Belchertown’s Alec Morgado scored an insurance goal on the counter attack a short time after.