Sports: Ston­ing­ton boys ad­vance to Class M state soc­cer semi­fi­nals

No. 3 Bears take care of busi­ness in fi­nal home game and earn trip to Class M semis


Ston­ing­ton — Jami­son Magowan had so much to dis­cuss Satur­day af­ter­noon, like his first goal 38 sec­onds into the game, or his sec­ond, that es­sen­tially cleared the path to the state semi­fi­nals.

But there he was, 364 days later, stand­ing on the same turf, quite happy that nei­ther he nor his team­mates at Ston­ing­ton High School al­lowed his­tory a chance at re­play.

It was in this game last sea­son — the Class M state boys' soc­cer tour­na­ment quar­ter­fi­nals — that the Bears' sea­son ended against Elling­ton. But Satur­day, play­ing a Tol­land team they edged 2-1 in the sec­ond round last year, Ston­ing­ton not only ad­vanced, but walked off their home field for the last time tri­umphantly. Ston­ing­ton 2, Tol­land 0. The third-seeded Bears are in Class M's Fi­nal Four and will play No. 23 Plainville on Wed­nes­day and a site and time to be de­ter­mined. Plainville up­set No. 2 Granby in a penalty kick shootout in its quar­ter­fi­nal match.

"We just didn't want that feel­ing again," Magowan said, al­lud­ing to the pain of last sea­son's exit. "It was a pri­or­ity. We weren't go­ing down on this field."

Magowan made sure of it. Be­fore many butts were af­fixed to the bleach­ers, Magowan scored — into a vig­or­ous wind — 38 sec­onds into the game.

"Coming in, I didn't ex­pect the wind to be that big of a fac­tor," Ston­ing­ton coach Paul deCas­tro said. "I was a lit­tle ner­vous about (po­ten­tial-

ly) fall­ing be­hind. A goal 38 sec­onds in, that's a dream start."

No. 11 Tol­land, which had the wind at its back in the first half, man­aged but one qual­ity op­por­tu­nity. Some mis­com­mu­ni­ca­tion in front of Ston­ing­ton's goal al­lowed se­nior Ryan Sirois a vir­tu­ally open net. But he ri­fled one too high, elud­ing the cross bar, but split­ting the foot­ball up­rights.

The Bears had the lead into the sec­ond half when Magowan found him­self with a cor­ner kick from left side. The for­tu­itous com­bi­na­tion of skill and wind al­lowed the ball to bend beau­ti­fully to­ward the net ... and in.

"I've never done that be­fore," Magowan said. "I was try­ing to go to the back post."

DeCas­tro ad­mit­ted the play wasn't nec­es­sar­ily de­signed to be a goal off Magowan's foot. But then, he was quite pleased with the re­sult. As were all the Bears.

When it was over, the Ston­ing­ton play­ers ran across the field to meet their siz­able rooting sec­tion, all singing to Kenny Ch­es­ney and "The Boys of Fall."

The Boys of Fall get an­other chance in the semis on Wed­nes­day, al­ready hav­ing taken a step last year's team did not. m.dimauro@the­


Ston­ing­ton’s Jami­son Magowan (17, left) and Max Wojtas, right, cel­e­brate with team­mate Tyler Fidrych af­ter Magowan scored just 38 sec­onds into the match, lift­ing the third-seeded Bears to a 2-0 win over No. 11 Tol­land in Satur­day’s CIAC Class M boys’ soc­cer tour­na­ment quar­ter­fi­nal match at Ston­ing­ton.


Ston­ing­ton’s Sam Mon­talto un­loads a shot in front of Tol­land’s Michael Angers (16) and goalie Ja­cob Young dur­ing Satur­day’s CIAC Class M boys’ soc­cer tour­na­ment quar­ter­fi­nal game at Ston­ing­ton. The third-seeded Bears ad­vanced to the semi­fi­nals with a 2-0 vic­tory.

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