PHS boys soccer remains unbeaten

PARKERSBURG – Freshman forward Immanuel Opoku-Duah scored two goals and assisted on another while senior keeper Reid Strobl made 10 saves as Parkersburg High stayed unbeaten on the season by blanking visiting Winfield 4-0 in boys soccer Tuesday night at Stadium Field.

The fourth-ranked Big Reds improved to 8-0-2 at the midway point of the regular season while the Generals are now even at 4-4-1. PHS next plays Saturday at home, hosting Brooke at 6 p.m.

Almost halfway through the first half, Opoku-Duah put PHS up 1-0 at the 20:13 mark in a flurry of action right in front of the net. “He chested that in,” said Big Red head coach Don Fosselman. “It went over the line and their goalie (Bryce Boggs) knocked it back, but the linesman saw it went over the goal, so we got it.”

With the score still just 1-0 at the half though, Fosselman thought his team “hadn’t played our best soccer in the first half. But in the second half, we played very good soccer.

“When we play possession-type soccer – don’t play over top and try to involve the whole team – we play really good soccer, like in the second half tonight.”

At 19:31 of the second half, sophomore Travon Nelson booted in a goal on a rebound off a Winfield block to boost PHS’s advantage to 2-0 before the Big Reds tacked on a pair of late tallies in the final 3:37 of the match.

Junior co-captain Hunter Hill drilled in a shot from 25 to 30 yards out at 3:37. “That was a thing of beauty,” said Fosselman, “He just ripped it; it was like a knuckleball going in.”

Opoku-Duah had an assist on Hill’s goal, than just 1:02 later with 2:35 to go, he “just got his foot right in front of the keeper, and it just deflected right over and went right in,” said Fosselman.

“We’re really doing well,” said Fosselman in assessing his team’s progress so far. “But I stress defense, because I think we still need to get better defensively.”