Belmont's Dan Martin "climbed the ladder" to head in a Chris Rizzo free kick past Arlington's goaltender Kelan Nee with 13 minutes remaining and Bobby Stafford earned the shut out as Belmont High's Boys' Soccer upped their record to 3-1 with a 1-0 victory over the visiting Spy Ponders Thursday, Sept. 13.
The goal came after a questionable foul was called on Arlington's senior captain Fernando Cuervo-Torello when it appeared that he cleanly took the ball from Rizzo about 30 meters from goal. The resulting free kick found Martin at the top of the box where he out leaped a defender to deposit the ball into the far corner.
Since an opening game loss to Watertown – which is the surprise team of the league this season – Belmont has outscored their last three opponents, 8-2 (Stoneham, 4-2; Wakefield, 3-0; Arlington, 1-0).
In a game that was played in the middle of the field with few chances, Belmont's quick defense was able to recover each time the ball was placed into space in front of Stafford to either kick the ball to safety or steal possession.
Belmont's Head Coach Peter Guellnitz said that the team has been improving since their opening loss.
"We're getting there. We're going in the right direction," said Guellnitz. "They have the ability and talent to win, but we need to do more with our opportunities. And that means having a passion out there; going after the 50/50 balls without fear," he said.
Belmont's next game on Tuesday, Sept. 18, at 3:45 p.m. will be a major test as they visit Middlesex League powerhouse Winchester, which has been the team's nemesis, beating them three times in the past two year; twice in league play and knocking them out of the MIAA tournament by identical 1-0 scores.
"It doesn't come any bigger then Winchester," said Guellnitz.