Bedford reaches D3 state semi-finals with 3-1 win over Lynnfield

Bedford – Division Three North Champions

Lynnfield with runner-up trophy

(Lynn MA) He told me afterwards that he was “surprised that it went in.”

But in it went, and the goal by junior Jasper Paez gave #1 seed Bedford a 2-0 lead in the first half.

That turned out to be enough, despite a Lynnfield goal later in the half, for the Bucs (17-1-1) and they  defeated the Pioneers, 3-1 on Saturday afternoon to claim the D3 North title.

Marcus Voss (11) and Domenic Ferrante (16)

That Lynnfield (12-9-1) even reached this game was remarkable.

“This was a great run for a tenth seed that barely got into the tournament,” said Pioneers coach Brent Munroe afterwards.  “We were fifth out of six teams in our Cape Ann League division.”

“Sometimes you go down to a better team,” added Coach Munroe, “and that is what happened today.”

That Lynnfield scored a goal on Bedford may have been equally remarkable.  The Bucs had gone ten straight games (late September) since they were last scored on.

Tommy Buston (12 covered by Matius Ou

I asked Bedford coach Dave Boschetto if he even remembered what it felt like to have a goal scored on his team: “I don’t recall what it felt like.  We’ve only given up five all season.”

You knew going in that goals against the Bucs would be hard to come by.  How about scoring goals?  Bedford had that covered too.

Right off the bat they were in on Lynnfield.  “We had a bit of a slow start,” said Coach Munroe.  “We weren’t ready for their pace.”

Inside the first minute of play, sophomore Max Alper nearly drove home a header.  It went just wide.


A minute later the Pioneers weren’t as fortunate.  Dexter Kennedy’s hard shot caromed back to senior Ryan Knight.  Ryan’s equally hard shot then went past Lynnfield GK Dante Gesamondo at 38:33.

It became obvious quickly that Bedford would be content to possess the ball continuously no matter what part of the field they were on.

“We wanted to hang onto the ball especially in the second half,” said Bedford goalie Chris Venuti post-game.  “They were only sending one guy up.”

Jasper Paez registered the eventual game-winner at 23:17 of the first half.

Jasper got beyond defender Benjamin Sykes on the left side and put a shot into the far corner.

“I received it (from Nolan Hafer), checked my shoulder, and the rest is history,” was the way Jasper summed up his second goal of the season.

After that goal it was easy to imagine that Lynnfield, down two goals, was on its way to a very long afternoon.

But the Pioneers had other ideas.

Lynnfield turned up a goal that Coach Munroe said was “probably the best goal we scored all year.”

The Lynnfield goal was set up by a cross from freshman Henry Caulfield from the right side.  Tommy Buston and Matheus Saramento both were in front of Bedford GK Chris Venuti as the ball sailed into the middle.

“#10 (Matheus Saramento) put a really good header on the ball,” recalled Chris.  “I was on the front post and he was too.  He flicked it back post.  It was a great play by him.”

The LHS goal (4:42) put the Pioneers back into the game.

“We felt good at halftime, to be honest with you,” said Coach Munroe.

The Bucs would gain permanent separation 5+ minutes into the second half.

The Pioneers committed an infraction about twenty-five yards from their goal.  That called for a direct kick and Dexter Kennedy cashed it.

Coach Boschetto: “We had worked on that set play for a while.  We knew that we had the goalie shielded a little bit.  We called for a direct shot on goal and Dexter finished it.”

Dexter’s goal was very important.  “His goal drew them out away from their goal,” said Coach Boschetto.  “Lynnfield didn’t give up, but that cushion made us a little more comfortable so that we didn’t panic.”

Bedford goalie Chris Venuti and Matheus Saramento after a Luke Martinho throw-in

The Bucs may not have panicked but the Pioneers Luke Martinho did his best to make that happen.  His throw-ins were instant threats.

“I told #9 (Luke Martinho) after the game that I was pretty scared of his throws,” said Bucs goalie Chris Venuti.  “He can put it anywhere.  He can put it right on you or to someone sitting outside the box.  You can’t see the ball.  It’s a very dangerous play.  We were lucky to defend it as well as we did.”

Coach Munroe: “Bedford’s possessions were awesome.  They switched the field.  They had really talented players at many positions.”

Alex Oleksinski

The Bucs also had depth. Every ten minutes another 5-6 players would substitute in.

“We know that everyone has out backs,” said Jasper Paez.  “The subs coming in are going to work just as hard as you.”

Bedford reached the D3 state semi-finals by defeating three Cape Ann League teams.  “We battled a couple of other Cape Ann League teams (North Reading, Newburyport) so we know that it is a good league,” said Coach Boschetto.

Coach Munroe: “I was really happy with our guys.  We fought so hard.  We lost to a great team.”

The Bucs certainly enjoyed winning the D3 North.  The team from the Dual County League had been ousted in the quarterfinals in the four previous years.

Lynnfield won sixteen games in 2018 and lost in the D3 North finals to Wayland.  This year looked to be a rebuilding one, but the Pioneers defeated the #7, #2, and #3 seeds to get to the finals.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Tommy Buston (12) and Matias Ou (10)

Luke Martinhow (9) and Nolan Hafer

Matheus Saramento (10 goal celebrated

Ryan Knight

Bedford celebrates third goal

Alejandro Lynch (13) and Jessop Collins (19)

Alejandro Lynch (13) defended by Jasper Paez

Bedford celebrates first goal

Dante Gesamondo up for a save for Lynnfield







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