‘Twin telepathy’ key for Stoneham girls’ soccer

Team captains and twins Amanda and Samantha Caldarelli of Stoneham High.
Team captains and twins Amanda and Samantha Caldarelli of Stoneham High. Mark Lorenz for The Globe.

Something was wrong. Amanda Caldarelli could sense it.

Her twin sister just didn’t look right. She wasn’t saying anything. In fact, Samantha Caldarelli was choking on a piece of food. Before their parents, Mercy and Al Caldarelli had any idea what was going on, Amanda went over to her sister, performed the Heimlich maneuver and saved her sister’s life.

That incident occurred last summer at the Caldarelli household in Stoneham.

“Nobody around the table knew what was happening, but [Amanda] knew right away just by looking at [Samantha],” recalled their mother. “We were all in the kitchen and she just, by a look, could sense it and she went over and saved her life.”


“People always say that we have ‘twin telepathy’ on the field, so we can always see each other and make good plays,” said Amanda.

Clearly, the so-called “twin telepathy” continues off the field as well.

Samantha and Amanda Caldarelli have been playing soccer together since they were 6 years old, including the past years on the varsity at Stoneham High. Now senior captains, the twins will continue that streak next fall. They have both committed to play at Marist College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

Amanda, a center midfielder, tallied 11 goals and 14 assists in her junior campaign while earning Middlesex Freedom MVP and Globe All-Scholastic honors as the Spartans (13-3-2) advanced to the MIAA Division 3 North semifinals. Samantha, a striker, netted 23 goals and collected 17 assists.

Their coach all four seasons, Sharon Chapman, has enjoyed every moment.

“Everybody wants to rise to the occasion because of the expectations that the two of them set just because of how they play and how they train,” said Chapman. “They lead by example.”

Stoneham coach Sharon Chapman speaks with her team before the start of the first game of the season against Lexington last week. She has coached the twins since the start of their high school careers
Stoneham coach Sharon Chapman speaks with her team before the start of the first game of the season against Lexington last week. She has coached the twins since the start of their high school careersMark Lorenz for the Globe

Their “twin telepathy” is impossible to ignore.

Last Thursday, Stoneham hosted Middlesex League foe Lexington. Midway through the second half, it appeared as if Samantha and Amanda were the only two players on the field.


Samantha sprinted down the left side. She fed Amanda at the top of the 18-yard box, where she quickly dished it right back to Samantha, who got off a shot that was denied on a great save. Despite not scoring, it’s plays like these in which one has to wonder, maybe they do have something going on.

“Playing with my sister is definitely different and special because not a lot of twins usually get along and have the same interests,” said Samantha who is 45 minutes younger than her twin. “But I’m lucky enough to play with my sister and it’s really convenient to have this ‘twin telepathy.’ ”

Stoneham senior captain Marie Hardiman has known the twins since eighth grade, when her family moved to town.

“First of all, they’re amazing people, they’re some of my best friends, so it’s really awesome being able to play on the same field as them because they’re so talented,” said Hardiman.

“Their passes, their give-and-gos, up and down the field are incredible. Nobody else can do it like them. I just think they’re awesome individually, but even better as part of a team.”

Amanda and Samantha have enjoyed success outside of high school soccer as well. In the summer of 2016, the twins won a national championship with their club team, FC Boston. Both acknowledged that it was one of their favorite memories from playing together.


The Caldarellis cherish every moment.

“We’re best friends, we’ve always been best friends,” said Amanda. “My mom always told us that no matter what happens, we’ll always have each other, so that kind of goes along with that we’re going to college together.”

Corner kicks

The Tri-Valley League’s reputation as the toughest little league in the state received a big boost in the opening week: Dover-Sherborn, ranked 20th in this week’s Globe Top 20, took down defending Division 4 state champion Millis, and Medfield knotted Medway.

“That was very encouraging for us,” second-year Dover-Sherborn coach Evren Gunduz. “Millis is one of the measuring sticks in this league. If we can compete against the teams like Millis, then we are doing something really well.”

Hopkinton, the defending Division 2 EMass finalist, is No. 6 in this week’s Globe poll, alongside No. 9 Holliston, and Dover-Sherborn — with Medway, Medfield, Millis, and Dedham waiting in the wings.

“The TVL is chock full of great teams,” Gunduz said. “It’s a privilege to go against some of these coaches and we all learn from each other. I am learning from them all the time. Every single game in the TVL is a battle.”

Gunduz said his squad has a new look this year with a veteran defense helping to facilitate a more aggressive attack. Senior captain Sabrina Doyle is a four-year starter in goal behind a stacked defensive crew of senior Jillian Davis, junior Olivia Smith, junior Kate Mastrobuono and sophomore Abby Desalvo


The coach said the safety net in back allows the forwards and midfielders to create more pressure with D-S putting in eight goals though its first two games. Junior Annie Parizeau had two goals in the wins against Millis and Westwood, while senior captain Cerys Balmer scored a key tally against Millis.

“We are looking to score more goals this year because we have the ability to defend with more organization than we’ve had in the past,” Gunduz said. “Because of the consonance we have on the back line, it allows our players up top to take more risks.”

Millis will get a chance to avenge its 3-1 loss to Dover-Sherborn when the teams meet at Gillette Stadium on Oct. 5.

Games to watch

■  Wednesday, No. 5 Hingham at No. 4 Whitman-Hanson (6:30 p.m.) — A monster early battle for the top spot in the Patriot League’s Keenan Division is also a rematch of last year’s Division 1 South quarterfinal.

■  Thursday, Medway at No. 19 Bishop Feehan (4 p.m.) — The Shamrocks welcome Tri-Valley League opponent to McGrath Stadium in a nonleague contest ahead of games against Norwell and Notre Dame (Hingham) next week.

■  Friday, No. 11 Norwell at No. 8 Notre Dame (Hingham) (6:30 p.m.) — Norwell, the defending Division 3 South champion, travels to face last year’s Division 2 finalist in a nonleague clash.

■  Friday, No. 14 Westford at No. 18 Newton South (4 p.m.) — Some clarity in the Dual County League Large might come from this one.


■  Saturday, No. 2 Natick ant No. 3 Winchester (6:30 p.m.) — It doesn’t get much bigger in September as Natick, a Division 1 state finalist, meets the reigning Division 2 EMass. champs at Knowlton Stadium.

Globe correspondent Scott Souza also contributed.