WALNUT COVE — The Surry Central soccer team played the spoiler role on Monday night with a 3-0 victory against South Stokes on the Sauras’ senior night.
The clinical victory keeps the Golden Eagles (15-3-2, 6-1) right in the thick of the Western Piedmont Athletic Conference race with Forbush.
Coach Blake Roth said his team controlled possession throughout most of the match and had a plethora of chances in the early stages, but it took some time for them to find the back of the net.
In the 29th minute, Julio Sanchez played a header toward the feet of Brayan Gomez, who easily tucked away a 1-0 lead for Surry Central.
Eight minutes later, the Golden Eagles capitalized on a corner kick when Adrian Gonzalez sent in a low cross to Josh Gibson across the face of the goal. Gibson used a simple touch to place his shot past the South Stokes keeper for a 2-0 lead.
Surry Central was able to stretch its lead even further within the first five minutes of the second half. Sanchez was on the end of a Gomez assist for the Golden Eagles’ final score of the match.
Roth said he emptied the bench with about 20 minutes remaining to keep his starters healthy and give his substitutes some quality time on the field.
“Those guys might not get a lot of time, but it’s nice to know we can trust them, and tonight they were able to keep the match at 3-0 late in the second half,” Roth said.
Johnathan DeSantiago and Ryan Gordon combined to post a shutout between the posts. The two have provided Roth with a rare luxury in high school soccer.
“This is my first time in 13 years of coaching where I have two goalies who I trust to get the job done,” Roth said. “It’s valuable, and they both have to see the field.”
Surry Central has three matches remaining in the regular season, and the Golden Eagles need to win all three to keep their hopes of a conference championship and top seed in the state playoffs alive.
The journey continues Wednesday with a match against rival North Surry, followed by a date with the Forbush Falcons next Monday.
The Golden Eagles will be looking for revenge against Forbush, as the Falcons are the lone conference opponent to top Surry Central this season.