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A hat trick by George Mason’s Elliot Mercado helped end Bruton’s historic boys soccer season in disappointing fashion, as the Panthers fell 6-1 in the Group 2A state championship at Radford University on Saturday.
This year marked the first time Bruton’s boys soccer program reached the state tournament.
George Mason jumped on Bruton twice in the first ten minutes of play, scoring on a pair of corner kicks and taking a 2-0 lead. A goal by Donal Reyes de Leon placed George Mason on top 3-0 at halftime.
Scoring on set pieces proved to be a theme for George Mason throughout the game, as the Mustangs tallied three goals off set pieces, including one coming off a free kick in the 55th minute.
With Bruton trailing by four goals, Donevan Adkins logged the lone goal for the Panthers with 13 minutes to play off an assist from Jalen Carr.
However, any momentum created by the goal was quickly erased when George Mason scored a pair of goals in the final six minutes to complete the state-championship performance.
Bruton concludes its season with a record of 14-10.