The Milton Academy varsity boys’ soccer team capped a historic season with a thrilling 2-0 win over Northfield Mount-Hermon in the Class A New England finals. The spectacular championship contest pitted two teams of immense quality and admirable styles. Following a strong start that saw Milton gain the better of the initial possession, NMH slowly gained more and more of the ball through its tremendous work rate and excellent ball movement. Both teams probed the margins of the field looking for openings, but few were to be found as both backlines stood tall.
The half ended with the score tied 0-0, “which was a fair score line given the balanced play in the half,” noted Head Coach Chris Kane.
Milton was able to come out of the half with great energy and looked primed to take the lead when Jerry Ozor drew a penalty in the fifty-second minute. However, NMH keeper Will Desautels made an amazing save to keep the game level. Milton stayed on the front foot and was able to break through five minutes later after a nice build up led to Luca Levee (I), scoring a beautiful half-volley off a feed from Jerry Ozor (I).
NMH dug in and continued to press forward looking for the equalizer. Keeper Jeremy Cowham (I) and the Milton backline stood strong, in spite of the impressive onslaught of pressure from the Hoggers. In the end, the Mustangs were fortunate to seal the win with a goal in the ninetieth minute from Amos Shapiro-Thompson (III).
“It was an entertaining and thrilling contest between two teams with a great deal of mutual respect and it was a great showcase of quality NEPSAC soccer as well as excellent sportsmanship,” said Coach Kane. “Both teams should be proud of their great work in this game and throughout the entire fall.”
The win caps off an amazing and historic season for the Mustangs. Over the course of the season the team remained undefeated and untied, despite a rigorous 22-game ISL and out-of-league schedule. To add to this feat, the Mustangs have not allowed a score since September, shutting out their opponents in the last 18 contests. This is the first time that a team has gone 22-0 in the 67 years of ISL play. The Mustangs are incredibly proud to earn both the Gunmere Cup (ISL Champion) as well as the Stewart Cup (New England Class A Champion), and even more proud to have been awarded the Blood Trophy, the league sportsmanship award. Certainly a season to remember!