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Bruton senior midfielder Matt Gerdes had a successful Thursday night.
Not only did Gerdes score the game's opening goal, but he also executed a successful "promposal" at halftime during Bruton's 5-0 shutout win against Mathews.
The game started off well, albeit strangely, for the Panthers. Just seven minutes into the game, Gerdes delivered a corner kick into the box, targeting his teammate Zach Uvodich, who was streaking toward the back post.
Gerdes put more spin on it than anticipated. The Mathews goalkeeper, out of position and not expecting such a severe curve on the ball, lunged desperately in an attempt to keep the ball out of the net.
The Mathews goalkeeper flung the ball out of the net, but not before the head referee deemed the entire ball had crossed the plane of the goal, putting Bruton on top 1-0.
A consistent theme during the game was offensive pressure from the Panthers. Bruton pummeled the Mathews goalkeeper, generating two close scoring chances before breaking through in the 18th minute.
Bruton's Miguel Martinez won a 50-50 ball just outside of the box and curved the ball into the back of the net, putting the Panthers on top 2-0.
The Panthers (6-7) continued to show their offensive prowess after the intermission. Martinez once against found himself with the ball outside the box. This time, Martinez ripped a shot into the upper-right corner of the net, celebrating the goal with a quick dance.
Less than two minutes later, Sharif Donkor followed Martinez's lead, firing a rocket of a shot off a set piece into the lower-left corner of the net. And, like Martinez, Donkor celebrated with a jig of his own.
The final goal of the game came with 15:57 left in the game. Bruton's Micahel Wilson carried the ball deep into the Mathews box and placed a cross directly to the feet of Chuckie Tenbusch, who was waiting just in front of the goal line.
A quick tap in from Tenbusch gave Bruton a 5-0 lead, which the Panthers would hold for the remainder of the contest.
Coming off a five-game losing streak that included tough games against Warhill, York, Jamestown, Tabb and Grafton, Bruton Coach Luke Taylor said it was good for his team to come out and get a positive result for their efforts.
Gerdes agreed with his coach's sentiments, saying the Panthers played with confidence for the first time in a while.
"I think we played a lot better than we had before, because we were finally playing with confidence," he said. "We came into the game thinking we were going to win. The confidence helped us tremendously."
When asked which was more exciting, scoring a goal or getting a yes from his future prom date, he smirked.
"Definitely the prom. It's good to get that out of the way now."
Bruton will continue its season next week with a road contest against New Kent scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday.
Bruton 5, Mathews 0
Goals: Bruton (Miguel Martinez 2, Matt Gerdes, Sharif Donkor, Chuckie Tenbusch)
Assists: Bruton (Michael Wilson, Juan Chinchilla)
McClure Logs Hat Trick in Blowout Win
Bailey McClure scored a hat trick to lead York to an easy 8-1 win over Southampton on the road Thursday.
McClure put the Falcons on the board early, scoring off an assist by Cameron Dail within the first 30 seconds of the game.
His teammate Max Poelker scored York's other two first-half goals, the first unassisted in the 15th minute and the second coming five minutes later off a Garrett Gonzalez pass.
Holding a halftime lead of 3-0, York picked up the pace in the second half, netting five goals over the last 40 minutes of play.
York has won back-to-back games and will travel for its next match, taking on Smithfield at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
York 8, Southampton 1
Goals: York (Bailey McClure 3, Max Poelker 2, Garrett Gonzalez, Joe Riddick, Paul Mahaffy)
Assists: York (Cameron Dail, Bailey McClure, Garrett Gonzalez, Max Poelker)