Eagles soar in rout over MSJ
ARLINGTON — Arlington boys soccer coach Todd Wilkins has won more than his share of blowouts over the years, but Friday night's victory over Mount St. Joseph's added a wrinkle that he'd never done before.
All 24 players, including the junior varsity, got into the game as Arlington rolled past MSJ, 10-0, at the Arlington Rec Park.
"I talked to [assistant coach] Travis [Hess], who has been my assistant coach for 10 years and this is the first time I've gotten that many into a varsity game," Wilkins said. "They've worked hard in practice, so to get in, even for a minute or two, is good. They've had a blast this year, they are having fun and the energy is still high after the championship [last year]."
Matt Ritchie and Alberto Lopez each scored twice, and the Eagles also had goals from Dominic Whalen, Lewis Whalen, Gabe Enzensperger, Kolby Wilkins, Taylor Therriault and Tyler Seeley.
"We have weapons all over the field and any numbers of guys can score," Coach Wilkins said. "We wanted to have possession and keep moving the ball forward and I think they executed it pretty good tonight."
Ritchie put Arlington on the board in the third minute, firing one in off a tough angle to make it 1-0. Lopez doubled the advantage in the 15th minute, ripping a shot through the goalie's hands.
Ninety seconds later, Dominic Whalen tallied, following a rebound and tipping it into an empty net.
Enzensperger joined the scoring party with 1:23 left in the first half. Lopez sent a terrific pass toward the front of the net. MSJ goalie Peter Carlson made the initial stop, but couldn't control it and Enzensperger scored unopposed for a 4-0 lead at the break.
The second half was more of the same for the Eagles.
Lopez scored his second goal a couple minutes into the second half before Wilkins finished off a scramble in front to make it 6-0.
"What a pickup," said Wilkins of the Spanish exchange student. "That was Coach [Werner] smiling down on us for that one. He's got a European style and we're trying to adjust a little bit to playing high school soccer in Vermont. He likes to have fun and the others feed off of that."
Ritchie scored his second on a rip from the outside and then Lewis Whalen, having been denied all evening, finally got on the board, scoring his first goal of the season with 8:04 left.
"Having Alberto in the center-mid spot frees up Matthew to do so much more," Wilkins said.
Getting in the back-ups and the JV players, Therriault scored and then Seeley added the final goal as the team cheered him on.
Carlson made 21 saves on the night as he was peppered by the Eagle offense.
It was a much slower game for Arlington goalie Bryce Harrington, who made two saves, one in each half.
"Bryce works really hard in practice and we've had a couple of goalie coaches in to help him," Wilkins said. "We didn't see it tonight, but we had a hole coming in to the season with [Linus Bialojan] leaving, but he's filled it."
Arlington has started its title defense at 2-0 and their next game is on Thursday in the opening round of the John James Tournament against Mount Anthony at 7 p.m.
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