Prep Soccer: Unicoi rolls past Happy Valley, 12-2

Published 11:03 pm Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Behind a hat trick by Unicoi’s Jose Ortiz, the Blue Devils topped the Warriors 12-2 Wednesday during a Three Rivers Conference contest at Happy Valley.
“I was just trying to play relaxed,” said Ortiz about his performance Wednesday. “I was just trying to give my teammates assists. I was just happy to score the hat trick.”
In the first minute of the contest, the Warriors got rolling as Happy Valley’s Dylan Burleson sped down the field and scored the first goal of the contest. The Blue Devils, however, quickly answered as Ortiz dribbled in for his first score of the game. Ortiz would finish the contest with five goals.
Unicoi kept blasting shots on goal throughout the first half as the Blue Devils posted nine goals in the half to lead Happy Valley 9-2 heading into the second period.
“The way we play is we like to move the ball around at first to get things opened up then we look for that shot on goal,” said Unicoi’s Christian Leon. “We have been doing really good about getting shots. We just have to work on getting them on frame and following in and finishing them.”
Late in the first half, the Unicoi bench and fans came alive as Blue Devil Derek Andrade blasted in a penalty kick to give Unicoi an 8-2 lead. It was Andrade’s first ever goal.
“He is a special kid for us,” said Unicoi’s Samuel Murillo. “When he scored that PK it was really emotional for us. It was awesome.”
Happy Valley would score one more goal in the first half as Warriors’ Brandon Orloff knocked in a rebound off a shot from Burleson, cutting Unicoi’s lead to 6-2 halfway through the first.
The Blue Devils posted three more goals in the second half. The Warriors would see some chances to score with the closest coming when Orloff hit a header that just missed as Unicoi’s goalkeeper made the save.
The Happy Valley defense stepped up in the second half as they slowed the Blue Devils scoring barrage. A big part of the Warriors’ defensive effort was goalie Caleb Lewis, who started getting into a rhythm and made some stops. It is players like Lewis that makes Happy Valley head coach Eddie Morrell happy about the future of Warriors soccer.
“The bright spot of this team is that we have a lot of young players,” said Morrell. “There is only four seniors. Caleb is only a sophomore. This is his first season at goal. He is starting to rise to the occasion. He is starting to feel comfortable with the position.”
Today, the Warriors will host Sullivan South. Friday, Unicoi travels to Hampton.

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