Corcoran nets winner for Lions vs. Mount
By Branden Mello - Woonsocket Call
LINCOLN — Lincoln boys soccer coach John D’Aloisio isn’t deviating from his approach – he wants to see his Lions get the ball on the ground and take advantage of their foot skills to break opposing defenses down.
While the style play hasn’t yielded positives results in the last two seasons because his squad has been so young and undersized, D’Aloisio hopes a deeper, more mature team in 2018 can make a deep run in the Division II playoffs.
So far, so good after one contest. Freshman forward Thomas Corcoran beat Mount St. Charles junior goalie Jacob Maddalena to a Kyle Rodrigues cross and the freshman headed the ball into the vacated net for the only goal in the Lions’ 1-0 Blackstone Valley victory over the Mounties Tuesday night at Ferguson Field.
“The goal is to win the [Division II] championship, that’s the goal,” D’Aloisio said. “Can we do that? I don’t know. That’s why were out here playing, to win. We’ll probably know where we stand by seven or eight games into the season. The other part for us is it’s competitive to be on the field now because we have so many kids coming out to play now. As you can see, we’re using a lot of people – 15, 16, 17 or 18 kids played today.”
A coach who knows what it takes to win a Division II title is Mount St. Charles coach Paul Jacques, who guided the Mounties to the 2015 title thanks to Matt Ciullo’s splendid free kick from midfield against Moses Brown. This season’s Mount squad is an inexperienced group that features a couple of talented veterans in midfielder Martin Piette, midfielder Thomas Burke and Maddalena.
The Mounties had the better chances early in the game, and if it wasn’t for a great block by Lincoln goalie David Leonardi 15 minutes into the second half, Piette would’ve opened the scoring.
“I thought we played extremely well for the first 60 minutes,” Jacques said. “It was the last 20 minutes where we have a short bench this season, that played a factor in the game. The warmer weather also played into it with some of our best players – Martin, Nate [Leclaire] and [Nick] Platek – cramping up. I’m not saying we’re not in condition, but we just need to keep working.”
Following Piette’s attempt, Lincoln completely took control of the game and camped out inside of Mount’s half of the field. Veterans David Chatty and Walter Albizures began taking advantage of Lincoln’s advantage in 50-50 balls. The Lions opened the scoring in the 60th minute after a couple of failed crosses. Rodrigues corralled the ball along the right touch line and bent a cross toward the penalty spot where Corcoran was on hand to head the ball into the net for his first varsity goal.
“I expect exactly that from him because he’s a real nice target who has good feet,” D’Aloisio said of Corcoran. “If he stays healthy, I think he’ll fit in real nice.”
Maddalena made eight saves for the Mounties, while the combination of Jason Marolla and Leonardi made five saves for the Lions. D’Alosio said he will likely continue to play each goalie for a half, which he did for most of last season. “I give those guys a lot of credit because typically one keeper plays the whole game, but those two get along well,” D’Aloisio said. “I think they’re pulling for each other all the time.”
Marolla was nearly put to work in the seventh minute when Mount junior Allan Villatoro had a chance to put a shot on net from the top of the box, but a Lion managed to block the shot for a corner kick.
Piette, who was Mount’s most dangerous player for most of the contest, nearly opened the scoring in the 24th minute, but he shot flew over Marolla’s net. Jacques knows his team isn’t going to get double-digit chances to score goals each game, so the precious opportunities they do get, they have to take.
“We’re going to have to take advantage of those chances and take advantage of free kicks,” Jacques said. “I thought Burke had a good strike late in the second half and for a second I thought it was going past the goalie, but he made a good play at the end. We have Hope on Friday, we just need to bounce back.”
Lincoln 1, Mount St. Charles 0
Mount St. Charles 0 0 - 0
Lincoln 0 1 – 1
First half – No scoring.
Second half – L, Thomas Corcoran (Kyle Rodrigues), 60:00.
Saves – MSC, Jacob Maddalena (8 saves: L, Jason Marolla (1 save); David Leonardi (4 saves).