By Drew Costley
George Mason High School’s boys varsity soccer team won the Bull Run District postseason championship last Thursday. The Mustangs beat Clarke County High School 2-1 in the finals to win the tournament for the first time since 2009. On Monday, they beat Wilson Memorial High School 6-1 in the quarterfinals of the Region B tournament.
The Mustangs possessed the ball only slightly more than the Eagles in the first 15 minutes of the district championship.
“Clarke came to play,” Head Coach Frank Spinello said. “It caught us a little bit off-guard, but I thought we handled it properly and did what we had to do to scratch out the win tonight.”
Senior midfielder Henry Darmstadter scored the first goal of the game against the Eagles off of a corner kick in the 13th minute. Before taking the kick, Darmstadter exchanged a few words with junior striker Cole Hinson about whether to tap the ball in-bounds, cross a pass to the rest of his teammates or go for a goal.
“I noticed that the keeper was really pushing his line and he was out around the six-yard box,” he said after the game. “And there was a bit of a wind at my back so I thought if I hit a good enough kick I could really curl it in.”
And that’s what happened. Darmstadter’s shot hit the outside of junior goalkeeper Danny O’Donnell’s right hand and bounced into the upper right hand corner of the goal.
Another in-bounds play resulted in the Mustangs’ second goal of the match. In the 36th minute sophomore Ned Quill threw the ball into the goalkeeper’s box, past O’Donnell and in front of junior midfielder/striker Sinan Kokuuslu, who knocked the ball into the back of the net.
But that same minute Eric Hoyt, a senior midfielder for the Eagles, took advantage of a miscue by the Mustangs’ defense and scored to make the game 2-1. Senior goalkeeper Sebastian Umerez said his team was in a dangerous position with a 2-0 lead and that momentum could have turned in the Eagles’ favor after they scored their first goal.
“[After the first goal] I usually get real mad,” Umerez said. “But I knew I had to stay in it so it just blew by me. I wasn’t even thinking negatively about it.”
The Mustangs began their attempt to win the Region B championship trophy with a match against Wilson Memorial. Senior midfielder/striker Kurt Ellis scored the Mustangs’ first goal of the match with when a loose ball crossed over to him on the left side of the goal during the 18th minute. In the 24th minute, Hinson was slide-tackled by a William Monroe defender inside the penalty box resulting in a free kick for the Mustangs. Paul Darmstadter took that kick and made the score 2-0. In the 28th minute, the Green Hornets scored on a cross that caught Umerez out of position. According to Paul Darmstadter, that goal changed the Mustangs’ mindset.
“We weren’t as relaxed as we were before,” he said. “We knew we had to score another goal and pretty much give them no hope of coming back.”
Henry Darmstadter scored the Mustangs’ third goal of the game in the 33rd minute off of a pass from Hinson. The score was 3-1 at halftime. Lawal scored in the 52nd minute and put the Mustangs ahead 4-1 after a pass from Ellis got through the Green Hornets’ defense. He also scored the Mustangs’ fifth goal in the 73rd minute on a similar play. Sophomore Patrick Perredo scored the Mustangs’ final goal of the game in the 78th minute.
The Mustangs played Nelson County High School in the semifinals of the Region B championships on Wednesday night, but results were not available at press time.