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HPU White denies top opponent, Vaiete Premier

by Jimmi Hemmenbach, staff writer

 

The season could have started off better for the defending MISO-league champions, HPU White. Lanikai Tuesday defeated the White Team, 2-1, in their opening game on Sept.17. The play in the following games against Brotherhood on Sept. 19 (1-1), and Bulls on Sept. 23 (4-4), did not convince the spectators that the White Team could follow up their fantastic undefeated spring season.

On Sept. 26, HPU White won 4-2 against Dawgs, demolishing the image of the team as easygoing.

Adolfo Gentil

 

The victory was followed up Oct. 3, against International. Once again the White Team seemed uninspired; however, the team got away with a 2-1 win to move on to early group finals.

The MISO league’s first division is divided into three groups. The winner of each group automatically qualifies for the playoffs, together with the best overall runner-up of all three groups.

HPU White’s most difficult opponent in the group is Vaiete Premier, which opened this season strongly. These two teams met Oct.10, to decide which one would take command of the group.

Marcus Santos

 

The White Team started the game clearly motivated. The defense, solid throughout, led by center fullbacks Hampus Monthan and Paul Zydek, didn’t let Vaiete Premier find their offensive players, amongst them former HPU student Renato Dos Reis. It took 31 minutes to break the even score. HPU White’s forward Cristian Clemente executed Adolfo Gentil’s cross into the box brilliantly, putting the White Team ahead in the game. Shortly after that, Gentil picked up a weak pass from a Vaiete player to his goalkeeper and turned it into a goal for HPU, making the score 2-0.

Clemente summed up the first half: “Our team is very solid,” he said. “We haven’t played like this during the whole season. Earlier we have played as individuals and not as a team,” he added.

In the second half, HPU White controlled the ball and created various opportunities to score a third goal. Seventy-five minutes into the game, HPU White’s right fullback Michael King headed a corner kick perfectly to set the score 3-0.

“If we continue to play like today,” Clemente said, “we will definitely be a candidate to win the regular season, and maybe even the playoffs.”

With this victory, despite being one game behind, the White Team closes the gap with Vaiete to one point.

Gratifying from this game was not only the work of the team, but also the performances of hard working centermidfielder Marcos Santos, and forward Adolfo Gentil, decisive as always, despite still recovering from a serious kneeinjury.

Photos by Jimmi Hemmenbach

 

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