HARWICH – The Cape Tech Crusaders put up a good fight, but in the end the game belonged to the Monomoy Sharks, who came away with a 16-9 win in Cape and Islands League action on May 16.
Six Sharks scored in the win, with Mark Pawlina leading the fray with six goals and three assists, while teammate Elijah Beasley added four goals. Rory Carpenter had a hat trick with three goals, with Jack Archibald netting two and Owen Smith and Jake Burnie one each.
On the Cape Tech side, Andrew MacPhee led the way with four goals and one assist for the Crusaders, with Dylan Vaughan and Rob Mackiewicz each with two goals—with Vaughan adding an assist—and Luke Pineo with one goal and one assist. Ezra Leary added two assists and Liam Taylor one.
Monomoy snagged first possession in the game when Jack Archibald gained control after the face off, handing the ball off to Beasley, whose first attempt at a goal went wide, but his second found the net, putting the Sharks ahead as game play got under way on the turf at MRHS.
The Sharks' first was quickly followed by a second, with Monomoy taking a 2-0 lead into the middle of the opening frame, hoping to set the tone for the game's remainder.
Cape Tech's MacPhee responded by taking aim at the Monomoy goal, but goalkeeper Kyle Gabri was ready and fended off the shot, forcing the Crusaders to regroup. Unfortunately for the visitors, the Shark defense thwarted their efforts and put the ball back in Monomoy possession en route to the home team's third goal of the game.
The Crusaders' first goal came courtesy of MacPhee and gave the visitors renewed determination, motivating the maroon and gold to keep battling the blue and white for every possible point.
Though penalties plagued Monomoy during the second and third quarters, they weren't enough to get in the way of the Sharks' lead as Monomoy continued to dominate well into the second half. That offered opportunities for the starters to step out and Monomoy's up-and-comers to take over.
Stellar performances were put forth not only by those who scored, but also by Connor Deveau, who added an assist, Tommy Pandiscio, Lucas Garneau, and Damarr Beckford, while the Crusaders saw strong play from Juan Camilo, Ed Hollis, and Ethan Gannon.
Cape Tech head coach Pat Lawson was pleased with his team's efforts overall.
“We did well in the beginning,” he said. “Our defense always takes a little while to get going at the beginning of the game and they eventually did. Offense, they started to shut off our two shooters, so they had to adjust. It took a while to figure it out but they started to drive the net, do a little two-on-one dumps. It worked a little bit.”
Lawson said his team's numbers—the squad only has 16 players—makes it difficult to sub players out and offer rest, meaning most are fighting hard throughout game play.
“They get tired, but they've done that all season,” he said.
Lawson gave nods to Mackiewicz for his tenacity on face offs, Camilo, the team's long stick midfielder, and MacPhee for his scoring prowess.
Meanwhile, Monomoy head coach John Kent offered praise for Tech's efforts.
“They had some really nice players, No. 2 (MacPhee) and No. 4 (Mackiewicz), No. 2 especially had some great moves. He beat our defensemen three or four times, as did No. 4,” Kent said. “They just had some opportunities they missed, otherwise it would have been a much closer game.”
Kent said the Tech defense was solid, forcing the Sharks to figure out how to solve it.
“Then we broke it down,” he said. “But they're a really good team. They played hard all the way to the end. It's how I'd like our team to play when we're on the losing end. I have nothing but respect for them.”
Kent gave shoutouts to Pawlina for directing the offense, moving the ball and scoring as well as passing.
“When we move the ball by passing, it's great,” Kent said. “And he led the team on that.”
Kent also gave kudos to Carpenter, Garneau on defense, Kyle Charlot, Pandiscio, and Cam Coomber, and Gabri in goal.
“He did first whistle to last and had a number of doorstop saves,” Kent said of Gabri, who had 13 saves in net.
At press time on May 21, the Sharks were set to host St. John Paul II on Senior Night, with the remainder of their regular season games on the road, beginning with Nantucket this afternoon (May 23), Cape Tech (May 24 at 4 p.m.), Sturgis East (May 28 at 4:30 p.m.), and Plymouth North on May 29 at 4 p.m.
Cape Tech was set to travel to Falmouth Academy at press time and plays its last game of the regular season on May 28 at Cape Cod Academy at 4 p.m.