HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, VA - The Hampden-Sydney soccer team opened its season with an impressive 8-0 victory over the Berkeley Knights as they dominated every facet of the game. It is the team's first time scoring eight goals in nearly three years with the previous instance coming on September 7, 2008.
Nick DeProspero (Midlothian, VA/Cosby) got the offensive explosion going for the Tigers with a goal at the 8:49 mark off an assist from Curran Blackwell (Wilson, NC/Greenfield), then DeProspero assisted on Chris Whiteside's (Virginia Beach, VA/Frank W. Cox) goal in the 22nd minute. Bryan Talbert (Seaford, VA/York) closed out the first-half scoring with an assisted tally from Bo Burn (Raleigh, NC/Leesville Road) less than two minutes later to put the Tigers up 3-0 at the half.
H-SC posted two quick back-to-back goals in the 53rd and 54th minutes as Burns scored first from Bryan Wharton (Glen Allen, VA/Deep Run) then Whiteside and DeProspero double assisted on a Wharton score. Just a bit over 20 minutes later, the Tigers posted two more quick strikes, this time courtesy of freshman James Lawrence (Midlothian, VA/Midlothian) - with an assist credited to Justin Pugh (Richmond, VA/Monacan) - followed by a Will Hess (Hampton, VA/Kecoughtan) goal with an assist to Connor McCarthy (Midlothian, VA/Clover Hill). Andre Graham (Midlothian, VA/Midlothian) post the eighth and final score with just 23 seconds remaining in regulation.
DeProspero, Whiteside, and Wharton each totalled three points on a goal and an assist while 10 different players contributed at least one point to the winning cause. The bacline of Jackson Parker (Raleigh, NC/Sanderson), Blackwell, Gregorio Pacheco (Montclair, NJ/Montclair), Caleb Watkins (Midlothian, VA/Cosby), and Pugh were tremendous throughout the game, limiting Berkeley to very few sustained possessions while also helping push the ball into the offensive end.
Hampden-Sydney peppered Berkeley with 35 shots with many that looked like sure goals but Berkeley was lucky and had players in the right place at the right time to block the shot on numerous occasions. Berkeley meanwhile had just five shots. H-SC registered five corner kicks compared to one for the Knights. Berkeley's posted nine saves to just one for H-SC.
Hampden-Sydney returns to the field on Sunday for a 1 p.m. a non-conference contest against future ODAC foe Shenandoah University.