C.B. Aycock claims showdown versus Eastern Wayne
By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on September 27, 2007 3:05 PM
PIKEVILLE -- Regardless of which school in the Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference you're a fan of, Charles B. Aycock's Alex Rodriguez is well worth the price of admission.
Rodriguez used his electifying speed and magician-like skills to record a hat trick (three goals) in the Golden Falcons' 4-0 defeat of county archrival Eastern Wayne on Wednesday evening.
"Alex is worth the price of two admissions," Aycock assistant coach Byron Adkins said. "He and Jorge Delgado make us go. (Eastern Wayne coach Jorg Wagner) mentioned the other day that they had to contain Alex and Jorge it was going to be a long night.
"Unfortunately for him, it was a long night."
Delgado gave the Golden Falcons a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute when his chip shot from about 20 yards out sailed over the head of Eastern Wayne keeper Vincent Hagedorn.
Just over two minutes later, Hagedorn attempted to clear the ball from deep in the Warriors' end, but Delgado stepped right in front of the pass. His cross to Rodriguez caught Hagedorn out of place, and Rodriguez found the back of the net for a 2-0 lead.
"It's important to get out to a good start against Eastern Wayne because they are such good team," Adkins said. "They gifted us a goal early and I felt like we played well."
Eastern Wayne (4-6 overall, 2-2 ECC) had a pair of what appeared to be certain scoring chances slip through its fingers late in the first half. Jace Muehlenthaler's throw-in knifed its way through the Aycock defense and was headed for the goal only to be cleared by a Golden Falcons' defender at the very last second.
Moments later, Chris Knobling unleased a sprawling shot on goal with Aycock keeper Kyle LaFlamme off his line. However, Brandon Nelson was there to clear the ball for the Golden Falcons and keep the Warriors off the board.
Playing the entire game without injured forward Robbie Keys, Eastern Wayne finished with two shots on goal for the game -- none in the second half.
"We had opportunities on goal, the transition was just difficult for us," Wagner said. "Usually we can deal with the long ball. We just can't apparently deal with the long ball to Rodriguez. We had a couple played off the line again early on."
Aycock's defense was a smothering force at times, limiting Eastern Wayne's ball movement and preventing any serious offensive threats in the second half. The Warriors' only real opportunites came off a pair of corner kicks, one of which never materialized, and the other ended with a shot that sailed over the cross bar.
"Our pressure was really good," Adkins said. "Actually, the last couple of games we've done reall well with the pressure. It surprised me that the pressure worked so well."
Rodriguez banged home a deflection in the 61st minute that upped the Golden Falcons' advantage to 3-0. He delivered perhaps his most entertaining goal of the evening in stoppage time, streaking throught the teeth of the Warriors' defense and dribbling right past Hagedorn before tapping home his final goal, capping an entertaining performance.
"Let's face it, Alex is a top-notch player," Wagner said. "He is extremely difficult to contain. Since his freshman year he has basically tormented the conference. He's skillful, he's quick and sees the field well. This is third year in a row now Aycock has been doing this and it works for them. Eventually, somebody will figure it out or Rodriguez will graduate."
Having posted consecutive shutouts of Wilson Hunt and now Eastern Wayne in a three-day stretch, Adkins feels that perhaps the rest of the league should take notice of the Golden Falcons, now 9-2-1 overall and 4-0 in the league.
"Having shut out Hunt the other day at home and now Eastern Wayne, to shut two quality teams out that's really good for us," Adkins said. "It sends a good message that you know we're here and we're going to win another conference title."
The teams conclude first-half play at home Monday. C.B. Aycock entertains Southern Wayne, while Eastern Wayne welcomes Kinston.
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