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By Harry Lichtman
GAITHERSBURG — On Saturday night, the Whitman Vikings boys varsity soccer team continued to prove why they’re one of the best in Montgomery County, as they blew out the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons 5-0 at Gaithersburg High School.
Throughout the game, Whitman controlled the ball more and created more opportunities. Early in the first half, senior Ryan Machado-Jones had a chance to score off a failed header from a teammate, but his shot sailed over the net. Senior forward Andrew Goldsholle also attempted a shot that went over the post.
The Vikings shot the ball on goal six times in the first half; all of them resulting in either misses or saves. However, the first score came when the ball deflected off a B-CC defender and into the net for the 1-0 lead. Junior forward Nathan Rosen was credited with the goal.
“I felt good that we had great chances,” said Whitman head coach Dave Greene. “I thought they were unlucky in the first five minutes, but I think, all in all, we had to run a play. I think, maybe, we had the ball close to 90 percent of the game.”
The second half is when the Vikings really got going. Early in the half, the team came on the attack, and junior forward Harmond Cohen slotted the ball past Barons goalkeeper Bennett Schwartz to extend the lead to 2-0.
The next two Whitman goals came on counterattack opportunities. The first was when Rosen made a pass from the corner to the goal box – where junior Benjamin Wilson happened to be standing – as he slipped one in for the score to make it 3-0 with 25:35 on the clock.
“The second half maybe is when we warmed down a little bit,” said Greene. “But we got some chances, and we have a really good team.”
The second half was when junior forward Neema Aalemansour booted one into the net to extend the rout to 4-0. A few minutes later, Aalemansour scored his second goal, which was the fifth goal for the Vikings.
“This is the way we’ve played all year,” said Greene. “We’ve played this way against every opponent we’ve played. We played some really good teams, and we have long ways to go. This is just the middle of the season for us.”
The Barons struggled throughout the game, as they were pressed hard by Whitman’s defense, turned the ball over many times, and failed to create scoring opportunities. B-CC only had two shots on goal the entire match.
“The performance itself was not bad,” said Barons head coach Gui Melendez. “I think the boys played well, but I think Whitman played extremely well. They put chances away, and that was the difference.”
Despite allowing the five goals, Schwartz was able to make four nice saves in net during the game.
“I thought that Ben played great,” said Melendez. “He got a bloody nose making a save.”
With the win, Whitman improves to 4-1 and will take on the Churchill Bulldogs on Monday, Oct. 8, while Bethesda-Chevy Chase falls to 2-3-1 and will face the Wootton Patriots on Tuesday, Oct. 9.