George Mason defender Patrick Rollo turned in a career night on Tuesday, notching two goals to propel the reigning state champions past the Clarke County Eagles 4-1 at home.
The match was played in a steady drizzle, which allowed for a lot of sliding by both clubs on the muddy field.
“I love playing in the rain. It’s good ‘cause I love sliding around, just having fun, and our team was ripe for a good win,” said Rollo, who had scored only one goal in his career coming into the game. “I’m glad (the win) came tonight, good way to start the week.”
Early in the first half, senior mid-fielder Alex Casteuble headed the ball to Rollo, a junior defender, who headed it again, this time past Clarke goalkeeper Zac Rogers to put his team up 1-0.
The Mustangs added a second goal at the midway-point of the first half when mid-fielder Andrew Arias sent one home, with the assist again coming from Casteuble. The Mustangs led 2-0 at halftime.
The Eagles finally got on the board when senior Cody Sheaffer bested goalkeeper Tyler Back on a penalty kick. Back dove towards the right post as the ball trickled into the left side of the net, bringing the Eagles within one goal of the lead.
Around the 24th minute of the second half, the Mustangs put the game out of reach, with Rollo again scoring on a header.
“I really wanted to get another goal, to give us some space to win,” said Rollo. “I just tried to find my way to the ball and I did and it hit the back of the net.”
With a few minutes remaining, the Mustangs tacked on one last goal, as defender Brendan Fribley put one past Rogers for the final tally.
“We’d like to win the Bull Run District” for the sixth consecutive year, said George Mason coach Art Iwanick.
“This is our 56th game in a row in the regular season without a loss. We’ve got a lot of players on the bench that will be contributing like tonight, and it’s really a battle for playing time right now.”
The Mustangs are currently 2-0 in Bull Run league play and 5-0-4 overall.
George Mason will return to the pitch on Friday, when the Mustangs host Madison County High in a game slated for a 7 p.m. start.