Boys Soccer Takes Crucial Win, Raises Funds


Jason Luu ('22), Orbit Contributor

The undefeated Reading Men’s Varsity soccer team retained their impressive record, taking an astounding comeback victory over the Woburn Tanners on Saturday (9/25) afternoon at the 14th annual Kicks For Cancer fundraiser day of soccer at Concord Carlisle High School. 

Reading’s match against Woburn was crucial for the Middlesex League standings, with a win for Reading allowing them to move into first place in the league. Reading’s play in the Middlesex league so far had been nothing short of impressive.  Along with league standings implications, the game was also part of the 14th annual Kicks for Cancer fundraiser day adding more emotion and passion to the game. Senior co-captain Colin O’Sullivan described the feeling of going into the game as somewhat tense.  “We were coming off a couple good games and we got some nice wins, but we knew Kicks for Cancer was going to be our first real challenge, it was great to get out there against a real quality opponent and get the result we wanted.”

…we knew Kicks for Cancer was going to be our first real challenge, it was great to get out there against a real quality opponent and get the result we wanted.”

— Colin O'Sullivan ('22)

Reading’s win was never guaranteed. At the halftime break, the team’s unbeaten record seemed to be threatened with the Tanners up by one goal after one of the more disappointing looking performances from the Rockets so far. The feeling from the sidelines with fans and parents was a bit tense, however O’Sullivan described the Rocket’s halftime huddle as more of a turning point for the team.  “Coach McGrath turned to us and said that ‘this is where we prove ourselves,’ and I think that we did just that in the second half.” The Rockets did prove themselves, with an electric performance in the second half, fighting for every loose ball and looking like a whole different team. The Rockets put three goals into the back of the net, with an excellent header from junior Shane Loughman, a somewhat controversial goal from Reading with a long drawn out argument from the Woburn defense and goalkeeper for an offsides penalty, and an unforgettable free kick from senior star Ryan Connolly. 

A thriller of a game like the one played on Saturday afternoon would be nothing without a little bit of rivalry. O’Sullivan plays with quite a few members of the Woburn team on his club team during the spring.  He described games against Woburn as “always a bit intense when we play each other in the season, but it’s always friendly with no hard feelings after the game, at least we try not to, but it is what it is.”  

Kicks For Cancer is always an emotional game for everybody participating. This year being the 14th annual Kicks for Cancer which started as one game played in honor of Lois Wells, mother of two Concord-Carlisle varsity soccer alums. Today, there is a full day of soccer and field hockey played for the honor of all those who are battling cancer and all those that we’ve lost, with all proceeds from the games going to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute to advance ovarian cancer prevention. Players played with special jerseys with names of loved ones that have fought, or are fighting cancer making the game that much more special. Another captain of the team, senior co-captain, Alex Cullen stated, “It’s a game that we always play with a ton of passion on Kicks for Cancer day.” You can donate to Kicks for Cancer and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute at .

The passion was seen out on the pitch, with the Rockets securing a statement comeback win against the Tanners.