After starting the game off slow against High Point, the Virginia Tech men’s soccer team notched their third win of the season last night, 5-2.
High Point started the game with all of the momentum as junior Mamadee Nyepon snuck a shot past the Hokies’ defense and netted the first goal of the game.
“We are a different team this year,” said Robert Alberti, Hokies senior midfielder. “We don’t put our heads down after giving up a goal. I know we have been giving up early goals the past three games and we have bounced back every time.”
Tech stormed back. Alberti scored his first goal of the game 11 minutes in off of a cross by sophomore Deven Mason.
“I peeled off the defender’s shoulder and was sitting on the back post and the ball came through. I just hit it and put it in the corner,” Alberti said.
Alberti has been a key player for the Hokies in the past weeks. He scored the game-tying goal in the end of regulation that lead to an overtime win against then-No. 17 ranked Syracuse. The following week Alberti scored the lone goal in Tech’s 1-1 tie against ACC-foe Duke.
“You won’t meet a guy who wants to win more than Robert, and he shows it every time he plays,” said head coach Mike Brizendine. “Every time he plays he leaves everything on the field and when you have a bunch of players like that you’re going to win.”
After surviving High Point’s initial push, the Hokies controlled the game for the rest of the first half. Junior Andre Thomas scored a header goal off of an Alberti cross.
The half ended with the Hokies leading High Point, 2-1.
In the second half, High Point attempted to regain their momentum by playing a more up-tempo style.
“They were coming after us all night. Even when it was 4-1 we were over here on the sidelines trying to get the guys prepared because they have an outstanding forward who can score on you at anytime,” Brizendine said.
While High Point did manage to have 11 shots on goal in the second half, Hokies goalie Kyle Renfro only allowed one more goal. He made five saves in the game and two in the second half.
“We went up a couple more goals on them, so they were pushing numbers forward and trying to get more chances,” said Renfro.
The Hokies combated High Point’s second half push with three goals of their own. Alberti netted his second of the game with a left-footed shot in the 51st minute. Senior David Clemens and sophomore Daniel Lauretano also scored second half goals.
The Hokies take on No. 1 North Carolina on Friday in Blacksburg at 7 p.m.