Hampshire picks up first win
It has taken a few tries, but Hampshire's boys soccer team finally came up with the winning formula against Westminster Christian on Saturday.
Sophomores Charlie Piazza and Jose Cruz each scored goals and senior goalkeeper Andy Peterson recorded 6 saves as the Whip-Purs blanked the host Warriors 2-0 for their first victory of the season.
"The guys continue to pick things up and get better each game," said Hampshire coach John Gosling. "Today we picked up the intensity and I was really pleased with the way we played team defense."
Hampshire (1-3) got on the board with 4:51 left in the first half on a header from Piazza off an assist from Keith Vergara.
"We were getting a lot of good looks leading to that," Piazza said. "On that play I ran down the line and got a nice cross from Keith. Their goalie tried to come out for it, but I was able to get it past him. We had been struggling the first few games, so it was good to get that winning feeling back in our souls"
It was Piazza's first goal of the season.
"He was in the right place at the right time," said Gosling. "We coach our kids to do their job. His job on that play is to be on that back post and he was right there for the pass."
Cruz added the Whip-Purs' second goal with 9:50 left to play on an assist off a throw in from Tyler Kofie. Cruz played the throw in off his chest, then turned and dribbled the ball a couple times before firing it into the net.
"That was just a nice piece of skill by Jose," said Gosling. "He does a great job of running our midfield, but when a scoring opportunity presents itself he can take advantage."
The Whip Purs had a 14-8 shot advantage in the game.
"I thought it was the best game we have played so far." Cruz said. "Everybody was attacking and defending and that is what it takes to win. We had a lot more intensity today. I think we were getting a little tired of losing."
On defense Jake Gholson, Peter Panagakos, and Michael Boutin did an outstanding job of limiting the Warriors' scoring chances and keeping their top scoring threat, Robert Kleczynski, in check.
"They are a dangerous team, so we made sure we had everybody behind the ball," Gosling said. "We knew about their big kid up top and had one guy on him at all times and had another defender to slide over to help out on him when we needed to."
Westminster Christian (5-4) had a difficult time getting any thing going offensively.
"We just weren't very patient," Westminster coach Steve Lauman said. "We kept looking to play through every time instead of letting the play develop."