By Drew Costley
George Mason High School’s boys varsity soccer team only has to win one more game to clinch the Bull Run District regular season championship. Mason beat William Monroe High School 5-0 last Friday, making Clarke County and Manassas Park high schools the only teams that could challenge the Mustangs for first place in the district and the top seed in the district playoffs.
Head Coach Frank Spinello said he met with the team on Monday after practice to discuss the scenarios that could arise depending on the result of the last three games on the Mustangs’ schedule.
“Even though we only need one win, we want to finish strong and have some momentum going into the tournament,” Spinello said. “So our goal is to win the rest of the games.”
The Mustangs’ record is 8-0-1. They would win a tie-breaker against Manassas Park, who is 8-2-1, because Mason beat Manassas Park in early April. In order for Clarke County to have a chance, the Eagles would have to win the remainder of their games, including a match-up against the Mustangs. If the Eagles beat the Mustangs, they would force a one-game playoff for the regular season championship.
Spinello said he thought the Mustangs played “very well” against William Monroe last Friday.
“We controlled the game the entire 80 minutes,” Spinello said, adding that the Mustangs outshot the Dragons 39-1 in the match. Junior striker Cole Hinson had a hat trick against the Dragons.
Hinson scored the Mustangs’ first goal in the 20th minute off of a one-touch pass from freshman striker Raheem Lawal. Sophomore midfielder Kavon Nowroozi hit a long ball up to Lawal, who passed it over to Hinson for the finish. Hinson made the game 2-0 by dribbling the ball around the Dragons’ goalkeeper after receiving the assist from junior midfielder Paul Darmstadter.
“I think Paul Darmstadter did a great job of organizing the midfield. Cole Hinson had a great night finishing,” Spinello said. He said sophomore defender/midfielder Ned Quill did a great job at center back. “I thought we were dangerous the entire night in attack and solid in the back all night.”
Hinson was also involved in the Mustangs’ third goal. In the 48th minute, he passed the ball over to junior midfielder/striker Sinan Kokuuslu, who bounced the ball off of the Dragons’ goal post and past the goal line. Hinson scored his third and the Mustangs’ fourth goal of the night in the 76th minute after Lawal’s shot was deflected by the Dragons’ goalkeeper. Then, in the final minute of the game, senior midfielder/striker Adam Witzel passed the ball in from the right corner to Paul Darmstadter, who dribbled the ball in four yards before launching it into the upper right corner of the goal with his left foot.
“A candidate for ‘goal of the year’,” Spinello said. “He hit it with pace and precision, like a full-grown professional player hits the ball.”
George Mason’s game against Rappahannock County High School was rained out on Tuesday and rescheduled for next Monday. The Mustangs also play Strasburg High School at Strasburg on Friday and finish the regular season on Tuesday with a home match against Clarke County High School, which means the Mustangs have to play three games in five days.