READFIELD — The top-seeded Maranacook boys soccer team couldn’t have drawn it up any better.

A quick start, trademark shutdown defensive play and a deep bench propelled the Black Bears to a convincing 6-0 win over No. 8 Carrabec in a Class C South quarterfinal Tuesday night at Ricky Gibson Field of Dreams. Maranacook (14-1-0) advances to host No. 4 Waynflete in the regional semifinals at 6 p.m., Friday.

“It’s huge. You want to start out strong and (finish) often,” Maranacook coach Don Beckwith said. “We did some nice things.”

Junior Richard Down scored twice in the first 15 minutes and later added an assist, and Maranacook padded the lead with four goals after halftime against an undermanned Carrabec (8-8-0). Even with Down’s two goals serving as the only breakthroughs for the Black Bears in the first half, things were rarely in doubt after the first half hour of play.

The Cobras managed only four shots across 80 minutes, a quarter of what the Black Bears produced in the second half alone.

“It’s important just to get the ball out and let our attackers do what they do best,” senior center back Bryan Riley said. “Not very many teams give up five goals in a season, so it’s something I’m really proud of.”

“It’s who we are,” Beckwith said. “That’s the bones of us. We’re a defensive team, and we live by not letting goals in. We’re pretty good defensively. It’s who we are, and everything comes off them.”

Down was central to the Maranacook attack all evening. He was in the right spot to produce the first goal on the game’s first targeted attempt in the third minute, and he completed his brace on 15 minutes when the ball fortuitously dropped to his feet deep in the area for another finish.

In the second half, with the Black Bears ahead by a 4-0 score already, Down held the ball up just long enough in the midfield for striker Micah Charette to take a step back onsides before playing Charette through for an easy one-on-one finish against Carrabec goalkeeper Brad Clark (seven saves) in the 67th minute.

“Coach always wants us to start out strong, and I ended up scoring and it pumped up the team,” Down said. “We ended up scoring a lot more goals.”

Carrabec remained game until deep into the second half, when its 14-man roster started to get run down by a Maranacook side that employed its reserves by the dozen. Cobras coach P.J. Vicneire was thrilled by his team’s effort from whistle to whistle.

“I thought we played well, actually,” Vicneire said. “They never quit. You’ve got to give them credit, pat them on the back. Maranacook was exactly what we knew we were going to get into, but for what we had it was a great season.”

Travis Barrett — 621-5621

[email protected]

Twitter: @TBarrettGWC

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