The mountain came to Muhammad on Thursday afternoon, and the craggy beast just barely escaped.
The mountainous Nauset High School boys soccer team, undefeated in its past 31 matches, put on a furious second-half assault to overcome a 2-0 deficit to tie your Vineyarders 2-2 in a Cape and Islands League classic at Dan McCarthy field.
The defending Division II state champ Warriors, at 6-0-1, were expected to handle the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School varsity (2-3-1), but the Vineyarders stunned onlookers and perhaps themselves when, barely six minutes into the game, Emanuel DaSilva took a long lead pass from midfield, raced past a defender, and went low right past Warrior goaltender Henry Watson.
Then Diogo Goncalves took a similar pass 22 minutes later and tucked it in the left corner for a 2-0 Vineyarder lead at halftime. The Warriors headed for their huddle after giving up only the second and third goals of the season, and playing from behind.
As if that weren’t enough, word came to the press box that Vineyarder JVs and Nauset JVs were knotted 1-1, with seconds left in the game.
But Nauset ain’t state champs for nothing. They likely have players who’ve never lost a high school game. The Warriors were 50-1-3 since September 2017 coming into Oak Bluffs.
The Warriors came out crazed offensively, against a defensive Vineyarders strategy, in the second half.
Nauset broke through with 29:33 left on a putback after sophomore keeper Hiaggo turned away an initial shot in front. The Vineyarders rallied to even play for the middle of the period, but with 4:01 left, a Warrior got loose in front, picked up a pass, and tucked it in the corner past a sprawling Goncalves, who had a sterling game.
Last week Coach John Walsh said his team could play with anybody. After a tentative few opening minutes on Thursday, his booters believed, because they were, in fact, playing the best just fine. Watch this bunch.
The 2-3-2 Vineyarders, still undefeated in Cape and Islands play, take on Brockton again on Saturday at 4 pm at Dan McCarthy Field. Vineyarders dropped a 3-1 match to the Boxers two weeks ago, courtesy of two Brockton goals on penalty kicks. Should be interesting this time.