The Halifax-Carver U16 boys’ team attended the Massachusetts Tournament of Champions (MTOC) in Lancaster MA this past weekend as the champions from the Coastal League.
The twelve teams in their division were divided into three groups of four. Halifax-Carver were in a group with West Bridgewater, Franklin, and North Andover.
They played two games Friday, losing the first game 3-1 to West Bridgewater. Cole Wright scored Halifax-Carver’s lone goal of the tournament after carrying the ball from the backfield to score unassisted. They went on to lose 3-0 to Franklin in the second match.
“That was the second game on the first day and our kids were just out of gas,” Coach Jim Coombe explained. The team fell 4-0 in their final game held on Saturday against North Andover, who went on to finish second in the entire division.
The various opponents all zeroed in on Halifax-Carver standout Gabe Pacheco, making it difficult for the team to get anything going. “The boys worked hard but we were just outmatched,” Coombe said. “A small town like us, we don’t even have tryouts, we take everyone we can. It’s tough but they did well.
They didn’t embarrass themselves in any way, shape, or form,” Coombe continued. Cape Ann United from the Essex League went on to win the entire division.
Despite placing last in their group, the team managed to enjoy themselves. “We all stayed in the same hotel. After the first day there after they had two games, you would think they would be tired but no, they took over the pool and were playing in the pool until 10 o’clock at night,” Coombe said laughing. Just being invited to attend the tournament is an honor as only the top teams from each league across the state are invited as well as a handful of wildcard picks. “It is a good learning experience,” Coombe said, “It’s a great experience just being there.”