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Eagles Romp Hertford on Pitch

Varsity vs Hertford County HS on 11/1/2011 6:00:00 PM
Posted Tuesday, November 01, 2011 by Adam Thompson, New Bern Sun Journal

Eagles romp Hertford on pitch

Advance to second round

Sun Journal

VANCEBORO — Lamberto Gomez loves getting his teammates involved. Antonio Lewis and Sue Rocham are often on the finishing end.

West Craven’s big three had a huge game in the Eagles’ 14-0 win over Hertford County on Tuesday in the first round of the NCHSAA 3-A state soccer playoffs.

Not only did the Eagles win their first-ever home playoff match, but they also set a school scoring record in the process.

“The fact that we won was a big thing,” said West Craven coach Aaron Steele. “I think they set some sort of record. I’m not sure if we’ve ever achieved 14 goals. I think that score reflects on this team. I get a big grin on my face talking about them because it is incredible with our size and our heart and determination.”

Rocham and Lewis each scored four goals, while Gomez had two goals and six assists.

“This is very exciting because people in the county were out here to watch us play,” said Rocham. “This is my third playoffs and I haven’t been a part of anything like this.”

The Eagles scored three goals in the first six minutes. Two goals from freshman Dalton Williams and another by junior Javier Monk contributed in West Craven’s 10-0 lead at halftime.

Senior Chris Cope recorded a goal in the second half.

“You try not to look at the score and we weren’t really trying to do that,” said Steele. “After three goals, we let off the gas pedal and switched different people around to give our bench a little more tuning.”

Everyone on West Craven’s bench entered the game. Goalkeeper Jesus Munoz had an opportunity to play in the field and starting defender Mike Cauley was inserted in as goalie in the second half.

Seldom-used freshmen Jose Lopez and Josh Chittuck and junior Jacob Lockhart had shots on goal. West Craven took 43 shots on goal.

“It was kind of nice,” said Steele. “We didn’t really have much time to get them in during conference and then our playoff game was the time we got to put them in. I was really rooting for some of these guys to get goals because they have been working hard and stuck with it.”

After the first few goals, Steele said his team started looking ahead toward its second-round match against Wilson Hunt.

“Against a team like this, you really have to focus on the small things, from passing to getting in the right spots and making sure we are looking for options to play,” said Steele. “For the most part, we were just trying to fix some things before we play Hunt.”

The Eagles (13-5-1), the No. 2 seed from the Coastal Conference, will play Wilson Hunt (21-0) in the second round either on Thursday, Friday or Saturday.

The Warriors are the top-ranked team in the state.

West Craven lost to Wilson Hunt, 4-0, in the second round last season.

“We are hoping that we go out as the team with nothing to lose,” said Steele. “I think that’s what has carried us through all year. We were the team that everybody kind of counted out. That’s made us work harder and play with something to prove.”

Adam Thompson can be reached at 252-635-5670 or at athompson@freedomenc.com.

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