WHITEFIELD, N.H. -- The Red Raiders arrived at the Regional with some impressive weapons. Unbeaten and with 15 seniors, Belmont had stomped all three teams in their path, but the Spartans refused to be trashed in their home opener.

Using a Craig Rhodes goal at 23:25 of the first half, Belmont did manage a win, 1-0 on Wednesday night, but the WMR boys battled.

\quot;This was a good soccer game,\quot; said Spartans coach Doug Kilby. \quot;I\'m happy with the way we played. We\'ve got a lot of work to do and we made some mistakes, but that\'s a team with a lot of seniors that came in undefeated and they\'ve been stepping on people. We did an OK job. Our ball distribution has got to be better and we\'ve got to close gaps defensively, but we still made things happen.\quot;

The hosts opened with four starters benched and another out with a broken ankle. That didn\'t stop the Spartans from going after a goal and Red Raider keeper Phil Joyce was forced to make his only save of the first half early.

\quot;They held us in it,\quot; the coach said of his reserves. The edge on shots belonged to the Regional, 14-11, but Joyce ended with five saves, while Eric Larcomb made eight stops, three in a row about the 15-minute mark of the second half.

Twice in the second half, Colby Chancey sent Spartan followers to the edge of their seats. First on a breakaway, he pulled the keeper out beyond the 18 and got behind him with the ball, but a pair of Red Raiders foiled the flight to the net. Cole Kilby kept working for possession in the corner and crossed it to the head of Chancey for a shot that barely went wide. \quot;Colby gave an effort today,\quot; said Kilby.

The best came last for the Spartans and their heart showed. \quot;In the last five minutes, we played our best. The intensity and the feeling the kids had out there is what this team needs.\quot; The Spartans took control.

Kilby said, \quot;The barbecue was beautiful. Matt Derosia made a nice tough play on the keeper and how that goal ever misses doesn\'t matter, but there was a great opportunity with the ball coming back in.\quot; Ross Conway chipped it to the back and Matt Sansoucy was right there.

\quot;He put it into the side net with the keeper out on the far side,\quot; Kilby said. \quot;I thought we were going to tie it up which would have been really nice, but that\'s a good team. They move the ball very well and diagonal runs in their offense are done very well. Our defense got lucky a couple of times when they broke in on us. This is not a loss you hang your heads on.\quot;

White Mountains, now at 1-3, will be at Newfound Regional on Friday.

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