ROCKINGHAM — The Richmond boys soccer team got contributions from all around in its conference opener Monday evening, as seven players scored at least one goal in the mercy-rule victory.
Sophomore midfielder Noah Jordan led the way with two goals, while junior Carlos Alcocer, senior Brett Baucom, junior Evyn Brower, senior Patrick Hamilton, junior Evan Hudson and sophomore Joey Nicholson each scored once.
Hudson’s goal ended the match with 24:52 left on the clock, giving the Raiders a 9-0 win over Purnell Swett.
“We knocked the ball around, were able to get the ball into space, and we had some nice through balls and crosses,” coach Bennie Howard said. “Everybody got to play tonight, so I was happy there. That’s going to pay off down the road.”
Giving everyone on the roster a chance to take the field is something that Howard takes advantage whenever he has the opportunity, as it allows the starters to rest and provides the reserves with in-game experience.
It can also lead to more than five players finding the back of the net in the same match.
“If you’ve got one player scoring all of your goals, then your opposition marks that one person,” Howard said. “Here, we had seven different people score. So when we play somebody else and they look at MaxPreps, they see that we have a multitude of guys that can score.”
Monday’s performance was much-needed for Richmond, who dropped its first game of the season last Thursday to a tough non-conference opponent in Pine Forest. It struggled to find the back of the net in that match and gave up four goals in the second half — which ultimately led to a 5-1 defeat at home.
The Raiders were also happy with Monday’s win because they were able to come out on top in their first conference match of the season. Howard says its good to get off to a good start in conference play, especially when your team is the defending conference champions.
“We’ve always got to start off on a positive note, because it doesn’t get any easier,” Howard said. “I guarantee Pinecrest is still upset from last year, so they’re going to come in ready to rock and roll. Hopefully we’re ready for them.”
Richmond (4-1) welcomes Pinecrest on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Reach sports editor Leon Hargrove Jr. at 910-817-2673 and follow the sports section on Twitter @RCDailySports.
Richmond’s junior midfielder Evan Hudson races down the field, as Purnell Swett’s Jamison Strickland trails, in the second half of Monday’s conference match. Hudson’s lone score in the 55th minute would give the Raiders a 9-0 victory.