Stingy defense solidifies boys soccer team (10/1/09)

Redhawks travel to Essex on Saturday

Oct. 1, 2009

By Mal Boright

Observer correspondent

They got through their “busy week” by adding three victories to an unblemished season record. Now the Champlain Valley Union High boys soccer Redhawks face a mid-season exam on Saturday at Essex High, where the Hornets are always tough.

This 1 p.m. contest follows a Wednesday rematch against South Burlington High’s rebuilding Rebels, which CVU nipped 2-0 a week ago Tuesday.

That victory was quickly followed by a 4-1 triumph over Mount Mansfield Union in Richmond and a Spirit Day, 4-0 lashing of visiting Burlington High on Saturday morning at the Hinesburg nest.

So, coach T. J. Mead, is the rust off from the lengthy, early season layoffs?

“Not completely, but we are getting there,” the coach said after the Burlington win.

He was still a bit grumpy over the fact that Mount Mansfield scored the lone goal allowed this season by his 5-0 Hawks.

CVU started fast Saturday in trimming the Seahorses, scoring three goals in the first 12 minutes, much to the delight of a big Spirit Day crowd.

Junior Mike Clayton, back in action after missing the 2008 campaign with an injury, launched two goals and added an assist. The Redhawks’ point-popper lifted his season total to eight scores.

Senior co-captain Nick Hart canned his fourth goal, while Zach Blanchard celebrated his return to the lineup with a second half blast from 20 feet out.

Goalie John Milbank had six saves for CVU, including a nifty leaping deflection over the cross bar of Ben Trendle’s direct kick with 1:15 left in the second half.

In Thursday’s contest against MMU at Volunteer’s Green in Richmond, Hart found the net twice while Clayton and Kyle Logan added scores for the Redhawks.

Milbank and Jeffrey Wettstein combined for five stops in the CVU cage.