KING — The Surry Central soccer team fell behind early in its regular-season finale against West Stokes, but with a share of the Western Piedmont Athletic Conference title on the line, the Golden Eagles refused to let this early deficit derail them.
Surry Central scored the match’s final four goals in a 4-1 win over West Stokes. The Eagles finished the season 18-3-2, 7-1, and sit tied atop the conference standings with Forbush.
“It’s nice to have a piece of the pie. Even if we get the second seed, we should have a favorable seed with a couple home games because of our overall record,” Surry Central coach Blake Roth said.
West Stokes opened up the scoring in the fifth minute when the Golden Eagles misplayed a Wildcat throw-in. Trent Washer beat the Central defense to the ball and finished his one-on-one opportunity for a 1-0 lead in the fifth minute.
Roth noted that from that point on, West Stokes played extremely defensive. The Wildcats tried to pack the box and focus their offense on the counterattack.
However, Surry Central broke through this defensive game plan right before halftime in the 38th minute. Miguel Tello fired a shot that just escaped the keeper’s hands, and Andres Flores was there to put it back in to tie the match at one.
The Golden Eagles took their first lead in the 45th minute. Julio Sanchez received a ball on the righthand side and crossed in a pass to Josh Gibson, who made a nice one-touch into the back of the net
In the 65th minute, Surry Central extended its lead when Arturo Lopez laid a ball back in traffic to Adrian Gonzalez. Gonzalez launched a screamer low, off the far post, and into the back of the net. His score from outside the box gave the Eagles a 3-1 lead.
Surry Central’s final goal came in the 75th minute. Brayan Gomez was hacked down inside the penalty box and converted his penalty kick.
The Golden Eagles now shift their focus to the 2A playoffs. Coach Roth believes his team is heading in the right direction as the season comes to a close.
“We’re getting there. Athletically and in soccer terms we are getting there,” Roth said. “Mentally we need to mature, but I was very pleased with the patience and poise our guys held. It wasn’t easy with West Stokes’ very defensive game plan.”