The George Mason High School boys varsity soccer team dropped its season opener, 3-0, to Robinson last Wednesday and the Mustang coaching staff is very, very pleased.
“Overall, the team gained valuable experience from this game,” Mason assistant coach Frank Spinello said. “We learned to trust each other, play for one another and leave it all on the field. Much more productive than a rollover win against a marginal team early in the season.”
The near rave reviews from Spinello probably stem from the way the Mustangs ended the 2006 season. After a loss by Mason at home to Clarke County in the Bull Run District title game, Stonewall Jackson caught the Mustangs napping in the first round of the Region B playoffs and shocked the usually dominant Mason squad with a 2-0 loss. In Monday’s loss, the effort was there, even if the victory wasn’t.
The Mustangs rebounded from the Robinson game, and last year’s Region B loss, with a 4-0 victory over Stonewall Jackson on Tuesday. Returning offensive spark plug Antonio Randrianasolo put the Mustangs on the score sheet in the 20th minute with a goal off an assist from Jack Settje. Antonio then set up his brother, Elio, four minutes later to give Mason a 2-0 edge. At the 32-minute mark, Elio converted a penalty kick to put the game out of reach.
Matt Gresko added some icing to the Mason victory in the 79th minute, with a goal off an Eddie Huber assist.
While the offense was clearly clicking for the Mustangs, the defensive effort was there as well. Mason held Stonewall without a shot in the first half, and only allowed four for the game. Eric Casteuble, whom Spinello lauded for a few athletic saves against Robinson, performed well again, notching three saves, including a one-on-one kick save to keep Stonewall off the board.
Mason out-shot Stonewall 20-4 for the game.
The Mustangs enjoy a brief respite, that includes an alumni scrimmage on Saturday, before welcoming J.E.B. Stuart for a match at Mason on March 27 at 7 p.m. In addition to proximity, there is a measure of history to the rivalry. During last year’s match, then-senior Tim Cammermeyer sustained a facial fracture that sidelined him until the start of the Bull Run District schedule.
Marshall Boys Soccer Moves to 2-1
The Marshall High School boys varsity soccer team unleashed a five-goal barrage to best Potomac last Wednesday, but a last second goal by the Lee Lancers gave the Statesmen the first blemish on their record, scoring in the final seconds of overtime to win 3-2.
Marshall was led by two goals apiece from Nabil Haji-Abuke and Gregory Goldbach against Potomac, with Richard Fulton providing the fifth.
Goldbach and Will Blakely provided the scores in the Lee game, before the Lancers went on to score three unanswered goals for the win.
Marshall next faces Wakefield away this Thursday, March 22.