By Luke Stone ’20
Jack Sloan ’20’s equalizing penalty kick against Covenant two weeks ago must have had some magical quality to it.
Before his PK gave his team a 1-1 draw against the Eagles, the Tigers were in the midst of a four-game losing streak in which they had been outscored 16-5. Since his equalizer at the death on that Tuesday afternoon in Charlottesville, the varsity soccer squad has won three straight games and outscored its opponents 13-1.
While the win against EHS two Fridays ago was a nail-biter, the two games last week were anything but. On Tuesday, the Tigers played host to Benedictine, whom they defeated 5-0. Three days later, they traveled to Charlottesville again and defeated Prep League rival St. Anne’s-Belfield 6-0 to improve to 5-5-1 on the season.
“The biggest difference has definitely been our defense,” forward Hugh Monsted ’20 said. “At the beginning of the year we were really shaky at the back, particularly in the first five or ten minutes of games. The last few games, our defense has been amazing.”
Despite the strong defensive showings, the Tigers have been lighting up the scoresheet as well. Jake Benslimane ’22, Sloan, and Monsted each scored twice last week to add to their goal totals for the season while Ben Antonio ’21 and Tommy Handelsman ’21 managed to get their first scores of the season.
The Tigers will not know just how much their recent form has helped them in the rankings until tomorrow, when the second VISAA State Soccer poll will be released. They will be back in action on Saturday against top Division 2 opponent North Cross.