STAMFORD — The Staples boys soccer team did everything it wanted to Monday afternoon against Stamford.
The Wreckers built offense out of the back, possessed the ball well through the midfield and created scoring chances up top.
All of that was good enough for one goal with several more missed opportunities at close range and a 1-1 tie at Stamford High School.
While Staples would have preferred a clear victory, getting out of Stamford with one point from the tie would have to be good enough on this day.
“We moved the ball very, very well today and so did Stamford. We were knocking it around, finding feet and keeping possession. I was very pleased,” Staples coach Dan Woog said. “I would have been happier with three (points) but last year, they beat us with about eight minutes to go, then we beat them in the FCIACs. This was another one of those good rivalries in the FCIAC.”
Stamford keeper David Collazo was again strong in net, stopping two quality scoring chances by Staples in the first half with diving stops.
The teams would go into halftime tied 0-0.
After Collazo made another save and Staples rang a shot off the crossbar in the second half, it was Stamford getting on the board first.
Kenly Lalanne was in the right place, putting home a rebound off the keeper with 22:04 left to play.
Stamford was able to possess the ball equally as much as Staples over the final 40 minutes, keeping possession through solid midfield play.
“I thought we played pretty well but maybe a little fatigue caught up with us in the second half because we were leaving the middle open a little more,” Stamford coach Mario Caminiti said. “Overall, it was an even game. Today there was more of a collective effort in terms of attitude. We played confident today and built the play with confidence.”
Staples would answer Stamford’s goal less than two minutes later with Austin Sholes sending in a cross which Nick DiMasi finished with a strong header.
“After we gave up a goal, I was pretty (upset) and I was coming down the wing. Mauricio (Inglada) made a nice play and I took it from him, beat one guy and just curled it in and Nick DiMasi made a great play to get his head on it. It was a great goal,” Sholes said. “We just try to put the ball on the floor and play. The team likes to play out of the back and that’s what we try and do. We don’t like to get in kick-and-run battles, but once in a while we look to go over the top on that offsides trap.”
PLAYER OF THE GAME
Austin Sholes, Staples. Sholes was back and forth all afternoon in his midfield position, making plays on defense and coming up to spark the attack. He, along with fellow midfielder Matthew Tanzer helped Staples keep possession in the midfield and build forward.
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STAPLES 1, STAMFORD 1
STAPLES 0 1—1
STAMFORD 0 1—1
Records: Staples 6-2-3; Stamford 3-4-3; Goals: Stap—Nick DiMasi; Stam—Kenly Lalanne. Assists: Stap—Austin Sholes; Goalies: Stap—Ry Cohen 10 saves; Stam—David Collazo 9 saves