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Eagles Sweep the Rams

Varsity vs Havelock HS on 10/12/2010 6:00:00 PM
Posted Tuesday, October 12, 2010 by Kevin Travis, New Bern Sun Journal

Cortes' return sparks Eagles

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West Craven tops Havelock on pitch

Sun Journal

West Craven's Jaime Cortes, right, celebrates with Nick Mitchell after scoring his second goal against Havelock Tuesday. West Craven won 5-1.

VANCEBORO — Jaime Cortes certainly didn’t waste any time in finding the back of the net in his return from a two-game suspension. The West Craven standout dribbled down the left side of the field, turned and ripped a shot from 20 yards out that went just over the outstretched arm of leaping Havelock goalkeeper Tyler Dill.

The score, coming just 10 minutes into Tuesday’s night’s Coastal Conference soccer match, was the first of three Cortes goals on the night. That helped lead West Craven to a 5-1 victory.

“I know it ate him alive just watching his teammates play without him,” West Craven coach Aaron Steele said about Cortes. “We were very fortunate to walk out with a win and a tie (while Cortes was suspended for card infractions).”

Joe Valdez and Lamberto Gomez also scored for West Craven (13-1-3, 5-1-3).

“It was a good outing,” Steele said. “We had good movement and the guys went after it.”

Eric Crewell got Havelock (4-10-1, 0-7-1) on the scoreboard when he took a Noah Kemble feed and tapped it into the net with just under 11 minutes to play. The Rams didn’t have many other attacks on the night.

Steele said he wanted his Eagles, who beat Havelock 2-0 earlier in the season, to shadow Kemble, a freshman, all night. The original plan was to focus on junior Zack LaHale, but he didn’t play in Tuesday’s match.

“We spied a little bit on Noah,” Steele said. “He’s a talented player. If we shut that down, they didn’t really have another option tonight. That’s why we were trying to suffocate them and make sure they didn’t have any options.”

Cortes gave the Eagles a 2-0 lead at the 24:18 mark after scoring on a breakaway. Valdez juked a defender and ripped a shot into the back of the net at the 5:12 mark, giving West Craven a 3-0 halftime advantage.

West Craven went up 4-0 less than three minutes into the second half. Cortes had his back to a defender, spun and blasted the ball into the net.

Gomez made it 5-0 just over seven minutes later after freeing himself with a nifty move, then rocketing the ball into the net.

Havelock coach Jeffery Harris, whose team was coming off a tough loss in Jacksonville a night earlier, was impressed with the play of the Eagles.

“Some of the early shots (West Craven) got early were just phenomenal shots,” Harris said. “They’re a good team and they’re well-coached. They have a lot of talent this year. When you play good defense, but they still get a good shot, it’s kind of demoralizing.”

Harris, who played four junior varsity players in the match, including junior Brandon Gabbard, who played solidly all night, saw some bright spots in the loss.

“They came out in the second half and played a phenomenal second half,” Harris said of his Rams. “The defense stepped up.

“I got some young guys in there and got a look at the future. There were some good things and I feel good about it.”

Both teams are home Thursday. West Craven plays host to Jacksonville, while Havelock welcomes South Central to town.


Kevin Travis can be reached at 252-635-5669 or at ktravis@freedomenc.com.

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