Amesbury Indians Boys Soccer '07

Mon, Sep 17, 2007 05:00 PM @ Amesbury
Team 1st 2nd Final
Newburyport 1 0 1
Amesbury 1 1 2

Amesbury wins first game in three years

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It had been three years and four days since the Amesbury soccer team last won a match when it snapped a 54-match winless streak against Newburyport Monday night. The Indians suffered through an 0-47-7 record during the winless stretch | not to mention countless ribbing from their Amesbury High peers.

"It's a given when any teams loses games like that," Amesbury junior Ben Lloyd said. "People are going to make fun of you at school."

Breathe easy, Indians. You will no longer be used as a punch line.

With the victory over Newburyport, the tide has turned at a school that has a history of struggling boys athletic programs. The soccer team now has bragging rights over the football and cross country teams | both of which have yet to record their first wins this season. "Now we're getting a lot of support for people in the school," Lloyd said. "The rest of the school is just happy we won. I'm still not sure everyone understands what it was like."

With what is now a talented junior and senior class, Amesbury appeared to be on the brink of snapping its winless streak since the start of last season. In 18 matches, the Indians lost by one goal six times and tied another three. Thus, when Brett Manoloff took over as coach this fall, he knew he'd have to oversee a shift in team morale.

"I wanted to work on organization and teamwork," Manoloff said. "Fortunately with the guys I inherited, we were bound to win pretty quickly. Losing is a hard habit to break sometimes, but now we expect to compete in every game." Amesbury's first four matches this season served as a tease for Monday's triumph. The Indians opened with loss to Georgetown before tying Pentucket, Triton and Manchester Essex.

But it worked out perfectly, according to Lloyd. Rival Newburyport served as the perfect opponent for what the junior described as his "best moment in high school." "The fact that it happened against Newburyport | that's big," Lloyd said. "That made it a whole lot sweeter."

Ironically, Amesbury will have an opportunity to start a winning streak this afternoon (3:45 p.m., Landry Stadium) against Rockport | the last team to lose to the Indians before the streak started Sept. 13, 2004.

"That's our goal," Manoloff said of a winning streak. "We expect to win every match. Newburyport has a good program, and I thought they played well against us. They had us on the ropes in the first half, but whenever those teams play each other, all bets are off."

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