Boys’ soccer win streak falters to DeLaSalle

Top team in state trumps Park


Jordyn Deshamps

Junior Amanuel Shetaye fights for the ball with a DeLaSalle player. Park’s 9-game winning streak was halted as DeLaSalle won the match 2-0.

Tobias Khabie and Jordyn Deschamps

Coming into a challenging matchup against DeLaSalle, senior Jovan Dennison said despite the opponents high ranking, the team didn’t treat the game any differently from usual.

“We kind of have the same mindset every game, just to play our best,” Dennison said. “That doesn’t really matter who our opponent is, just go out and have fun.”

It helped having that feeling of a loss, especially before sections because now we know we don’t want to have that feeling of a bad loss like that ever again.”

— Bennett Kouame

Head coach Chato Alvarez said going into the game he was excited to match up against the best team in the state despite the challenges that come with it.

“I was actually pretty excited, I know DeLaSalle is ranked first in the state, and I was pretty excited to play them, but we knew that it would be a very competitive game,” Alvarez said. 

The team, which had come into the game with a 9-game win streak, lost the Oct. 2 matchup 2-0. Senior captain Bennett Kouame said playing DeLaSalle was a reality check for the team, and it prepared them for upcoming sections.

“Obviously we didn’t get the result that we wanted but I think (it was a) learning experience,” Kouame said. “It helped having that feeling of a loss, especially before sections because now we know we don’t want to have that feeling of a bad loss like that ever again.” 

Alvarez said he feels the team could improve on their moving skills and creating space to pass the ball to the next player.

“I felt that we were just passing the ball and not moving, so that is something that we can work on,” Alvarez said. “Moving the ball to create space and opportunity to pass the ball, this makes it very hard for the team to merge.”

Kouame said he feels the team’s hard work and taking opportunities is the key to success.

“We just have to take advantage of our opportunities,” Kouame said. “Then we can sit back and relax a little bit more.” 

According to Dennison, having the right mindset is paramount in order for the team to have the best chance at winning future games.

“We can’t go into the game knowing that we’re going to win,” Dennison said. “We have a super tough section and then we might have teams who might even be better than DeLaSalle, so we have to really be under the game and everyone has got to be mentally focused.”

Despite the loss, Alvarez said he is proud that his players kept their heads up, and stayed motivated until the end.

“The fact that we didn’t give up, the players kept on playing hard until the end, we had a couple of plays that almost gave us a goal,” Alvarez said. “I think the highlight was that our boys did not give up.”

The team will have a chance to bounce back and win the conference at its next matchup against Orono at 7 p.m. Oct. 5, at Orono High School.