By: seniors Grant Knepp and Chloe Bruell
“Concentrate! Concentrate!” yelled Coach Kennell as the RB/E varsity soccer game on Monday, Sept. 28 against the Blue Ridge Knights kicked off, literally. Coming off of their win against Limestone the previous Saturday, the RB/E Rockets were prepared to bring home another win, but Blue Ridge was not going to give up easily; this game was personal. “Last year, we were the only team to beat Blue Ridge in the regular season,” said senior Mitch Kuntz, “They came back this year with something to prove.”
Only a few minutes into the game, the Knights scored on the Rockets with a penalty kick, taking an early lead of 1-0. This was followed by another kick to the Rockets when their goalie, Roanoke senior Grant Hodel had a collision with another player. The team held their breath in anticipation, wondering if Hodel was okay, but with a thumbs up he signaled he was alright and ready to keep playing. Things then started to turn around for the team, as Roanoke senior Zach Meinhold scored the first goal for the team, tying up the game with 12 minutes left in the first half.
The score remained tied going into the second half, with a close call blocked by Hodel. Moments later, Roanoke senior Austin Martin drove the ball up the field, and made the goal, giving the team a lead of 2-1. Victory was near, and there was a minute left on the clock, when the Knights came dangerously close to scoring a goal, but once again the shot was saved by Hodel, securing the win. The crowd went wild as the Rockets defeated the Blue Ridge Knights for the second year in a row. ¨It was a good game,” said junior Titus Williamson. ¨We fought hard, and we’ll come out and do it again.”