The Ashley Ridge boys’ soccer team won its first of three key matches of the week.
The Swamp Foxes defeated Beaufort 2-0 Tuesday to improve to 14-4-1 with a 5-2 mark in Region 8-AAAA. The win keeps the Swamp Foxes’ hopes of claiming the region championship alive but Fort Dorchester, Summerville and Bluffton are also eyeing the prize. Ashley Ridge faced Summerville Thursday after press time and hosts the Green Wave at 6 p.m. May 2 for a game that may take one of the teams out of contention.
“We are determined and I think we are strong enough to pull it off,” Ashley Ridge senior Manuel Enciso said Tuesday. “It will be a long week but we are just going to focus on giving it all we have. Most of our region games have been one-point games so we expect these last few to also be close. We just have to keep working until the end and we certainly can’t get cocky.”
In the first 11 minutes, Swamp Fox striker Britt Soyebo made a couple of runs at the Eagles’ goal but his shots were just off their mark.
In the 17th minute, defender Jake Kreider sent a deep ball across midfield causing a Beaufort player to head it to the Eagles’ keeper. Freshman Tristen Caples charged the ball and got to it at the same time as the keeper.
The keeper ended up on the ground and Caples ended up with a prime scoring opportunity.
One other defender challenged him, but Caples worked past him and sent a shot into the net for a 1-0 AR lead before the only other Eagle in the area could get in position to stop him.
Both teams created other scoring opportunities later in the period but the defenses held and the Swamp Foxes entered halftime with the one-point lead.
The second half was also competitive and only featured one score. Less than two minutes into the period Enciso received a pass that left just one defender plus the goalkeeper to beat and took advantage for the 2-0 score.
“Michael Sauter played me the ball so I made the run inside and got a good angle on the goalie,” Enciso said.
Senior Stockton Blanchard had the shut out in goal for the Swamp Foxes.
Next week, Ashley Ridge will wrap up its schedule with a game at Colleton County May 6 and a game at Bishop England May 7.
Fort Dorchester (13-4-1, 6-2) moved into first place for Region 8-AAAA Tuesday with a 7-0 win over Colleton County. The Patriots host Bluffton (13-5-0, 5-3) May 2 and travel to Summerville May 6.
After defeating Bluffton 4-1 Tuesday, the Green Wave boys carried a 9-9-2 record and a 5-2 mark in region play into Thursday night’s game against Ashley Ridge.