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Prep soccer: Hurricane tops Capital 2-0

By Nick Brockman

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Several of the pieces that lifted Hurricane to the Class AAA boys soccer state championship departed, including long-time Coach Jim Dagostine, since last season, though the Redskins have opened the 2013 schedule with back-to-back wins.

It's a new makeup, but through two games Hurricane (2-0) and first-year Coach Derek Ragle have employed a winning equation, including a 2-0 win at Capital (1-1) Tuesday. Senior foreign-exchange student Guillermo Ugarte, of Chile, and junior Loran Meadows provided the difference with the game's lone goals.

"This situation I stepped into, we lost eight, nine starters from last year," Ragle said. "Every day we have to improve and so far I've been really pleased. We can't do any better, we're 2-0."

While the teams locked in battle throughout, Ugarte's first-half goal ultimately made the difference. Ugarte scored on a penalty kick, following a Capital handball, 23 minutes into the first half. Positioned in the middle of the box, Ugarte sized Cougars sophomore goalkeeper Kevin Jones and fired home the decisive kick into the net.

With a one-goal advantage and both teams threatening throughout the second half, Meadows added the game's second goal on a set piece, with Ugarte on the assist, with 8 minutes remaining in the contest. The goal instantly provided greater comfort to the Redskins who had fought to dismiss Capital's offensive pressure.

Meadows and Ugarte have proved pivotal this season thus far offensively for Hurricane. The duo has combined to account for all seven Redskins goals this season. Meadows tallied three goals and Ugarte two in Hurricane's season-opening 5-0 win versus Teays Valley Christian on Saturday.

The tandem's scoring success is a direct result of their instant bond, Ragle said.

"As soon as Guillermo came here from Chile, they developed a quick chemistry together," Ragle said. "It's blossomed into a pretty potent combination on the field."

In addition to the stellar offensive display of Ugarte and Meadows, Redskins senior goalkeeper Tim Hayslett's play continued to shine with his second shutout of the young season.

"I would put (Hayslett) up against any keeper in the area, maybe even the state" Ragle said. "He comes to work every day, does everything he's asked to do and gives 110 percent. He's just a really hard worker."

Hayslett's opposite in Capital keeper Jones also manufactured a solid effort with 10 saves against the Redskins offensive pressure, though Jones fell short in matching Hayslett's shutout.

Hurricane utilized new faces in the win, with nine returners lost from last year's squad. Beyond the missing players, Ragle, a former Redskins player and assistant, has also replaced seven-year coach Dagostine.

"We're playing lots of new guys, some in new positions," Ragle said. "Some happened to perform at a higher level than they have in the past and they've stepped up to the challenge."

The Redskins will look to continue their solid start when Hurricane next plays host to Woodrow Wilson 5 p.m. Thursday. Capital next plays host to St. Albans, 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

 


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