Deering boys’ soccer coach Joel Costigan knew his team was capable of great things, but the Rams hadn’t been able to put it all together in a game.

After being held scoreless by rival Cheverus in the first half Thursday at Memorial Field, Deering’s offense finally erupted.

Carlos Adriano-Muaco scored the tying goal, Carlo DeMucci added two in quick succession, and the Rams went on to an emphatic 5-1 victory.

“We were very excited about this team going into this year,” said Costigan. “Things worked in practice, but we weren’t clicking in games. Now, this is the first manifestation of what we can be. I’d say this is one of our biggest wins in my 10 years.”

Cheverus (1-3), which managed just one goal in its first three games, got on the board in the 25th minute. After James Baur was taken down in the box, Brady Cormier converted the penalty kick, beating goalkeeper Sam Spach.

Deering (2-1), on its Senior Night, then found another gear in the second half.

Adriano-Muaco started the surge off a nice pass from Muntasir Ahmed. After sending a shot past goalkeeper Silas Jones, Adriano-Muaco did a flip in celebration.

“I was excited for the game,” Adriano-Muaco said through an interpreter. “I got the goal and that’s my signature celebration.”

Just over five minutes later, DeMucci stole the ball from a Cheverus defender, went one-on-one with Jones and finished to put the Rams ahead for good.

With 25:03 left, DeMucci scored again. This time, he received a pass from Ahmed, raced up the sideline, then cut along the end line before beating Jones (seven saves) to the near post.

“After the first half, we knew we had to get it into gear,” said DeMucci. “It’s a special night for some of these guys. We showed our fight. That celebration fired us up.”

Two more goals in quick succession ended all doubt. Ahmed set up Adriano-Muaco with 19:41 remaining, then scored an unassisted goal after a nice move with 13:04 left.

“A big problem our last few games has been energy,” Costigan said. “We’ve been on our heels. We’ve had great training sessions all week, so I just reminded them (at halftime) of that progress we’d made. They needed to motivate themselves and they did it.”

The Rams outshot the Stags, 12-4, and got three saves from Spach.

Cheverus Coach Bill LeBlanc was pleased by his team’s performance in the first half, but not so much in the second half.

“We played really well in the first half, but we’re just not mentally tough enough right now to play 80 minutes,” said LeBlanc. “We thought we were good, but they played better in the second half. We had some mental errors in the back and we couldn’t handle it.”

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