Pam Pack routs Chargers for eighth win

Published 4:07 pm Tuesday, September 13, 2016

It only took the first half of Monday’s game for Washington to coast past Ayden-Grifton, 9-0, and improve to 8-0 on the season. Sophomores Victor Hernandez and Oscar Espinoza each scored a pair of goals, and five other Pam Pack players found twine, too. Eric Ruiz netted one and assisted on four others.

Washington’s offense threatened right out of the gate. The boys built a 3-0 lead within the first 10 minutes. Ruiz set up Zerniak with a well-placed pass on the left side of the box. Blake Parker doubled the Pam Pack’s advantage with a shot from outside the box that rolled into the left corner.

Hernandez scored his first goal by dribbling into the box from the left side and firing a strong shot that the Charger goalkeeper got a piece of, but couldn’t stop. He made it 4-0 three minutes later. He made a stop-and-go move to the middle of the box before ripping another shot that the opposing keeper again got a hand on, but didn’t stop.

The early lead allowed Washington to focus on possession and building through the midfield. The Pam Pack was able to back up Ayden-Grifton’s defense, which struggled with communication throughout the 40-minute affair.

It also let the boys have some fun. They experimented with substitutes, set pieces and even brought keeper Kevin Avilla into the attack a few times.

“It’s great. We needed to work on a couple of things,” coach Jim Kozuch said. “We moved the ball around well. We’ve been fortunate enough to stay healthy and put up some goals on the board.”

Tim Anglim found the back of the net in the 21st minute. Espinoza followed up with back-to-back goals over the next five minutes. He fired a laser into the top-left corner from outside the box for his first goal. In the 26th minute, Ben McKeithan threw the ball into the box, which found Espinoza’s head to beat the keeper.

Paul Byrd scored the penultimate goal in the 33rd minute. Jose Gamboa set him up nicely for a one-time tip into the net. Ruiz finished the Chargers off in the 38th minute.

“I think we need to get Hermes (Elizalde) a goal,” Kozuch laughed. “But we do have a couple of things to work on, naturally. We just want to get better every day.”

Washington hosts West Craven on Wednesday before closing its non-conference slate at home against a top-tier First Flight club.