Playoffs come to abrupt end for Tiverton boys soccer

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Given their ability to play well against some of the division's better teams, the Tiverton boys soccer team had hoped for a deep playoff run.

Scituate dashed those hopes with about two minutes  left in the first overtime to pull off a 3-2 win Wednesday at Scituate.

"It seems like I keep saying this but it was a close, even game," coach Tom Murray said. "It really could have gone either way but as has happened a lot this season, we had trouble finishing plays. It was a great effort though."

As happened in the last regular season game, set plays were Tiverton's undoing — a throw-in and a corner kick both led to Scituate goals.

"We worked on that all week at practice but it got us again.

Scituate scored first early in the first half but Dylan Paceco beat several players and then the Scituate goalie to tie the game at 1-1. A late-half lapse let Scituate regain the lead which stood at 2-1 going into halftime.

Then Tommy Murray scored on a low, hard shot and the game remained tied at 2-2 through regulation.

"I thought we outplayed them in the middle of both halves — it was really back and forth," the coach said.

In the overtime, Scituate repeatedly dumped the ball into the Tiverton end, "forcing  Ian (Rasheigh McNally) to make saves."

Eventually one of those chances went in and, despite playing a second 10-minute overtime, Tiverton was unable to answer and its season came to an end.

"I still think that if we had won this one we could have made a deep run but that's not how it turned out," Coach Murray said.

"It was a good year, especially having lost so many seniors from the year before." The team developed into one that could control games for extended periods but lacked the knack to consistently finish off scoring chances.

With 11 seniors due to graduate from this year's team, "It could be much of the same next year but some of our younger players gained some valuable experience. "

The coach added, "They deserved to win a few more games but this has been a good group to work with." The early exit "hit them hard, especially the seniors. But they can be proud of the effort they put in all season long."

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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.