Oak Mountain shuts out rival Spain Park to earn area championship
Published 12:56 pm Wednesday, April 12, 2023
By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor
HOOVER – The Oak Mountain Eagles continued their stronghold on the No. 1 spot in the Class 7A soccer rankings on Tuesday, April 11, as well as firm command in Class 7A, Area 6 in a dominant effort against Spain Park.
On the road, the Eagles scored five goals in the opening half and then posted another five in the second half to end the game eight minutes early with a 10-0 shutout of the Jaguars.
With that, Oak Mountain improved to 5-0 in area and officially locked up the area championship to gain the No. 1 spot from the area heading into the playoffs.
The Eagles started the game strong with three goals in the first 20 minutes of the matchup, two of which came from Gabe Capocci. He scored the game’s first goal 10 minutes in and added a second goal eight minutes after that to make it 2-0.
Gerardo Rodriguez then got in on the action with a goal of his own shortly after to make it 3-0 with 22:52 to play in the opening half.
James Whatley then made his presence felt when he buried two goals in a matter of minutes, scoring with 18 minutes left and again with 15:55 left to make it 5-0.
That ultimately became the halftime score, but the Eagles were just getting warmed up.
It took just five minutes for Capocci to add his hat-trick goal in the second half, scoring the team’s sixth of the game with 34:49 to play.
The game’s most quiet stretch followed with no goals over the next 17 minutes, but Om Shrestha put an end to that when he scored Oak Mountain’s eighth goal of the night with 17:15 to play.
That was followed by back-to-back goals from Sam Collins within the span of a minute to make it 9-0 with 12:08 to play, while Whatley added his hat-trick goal with eight minutes left to complete the 10-0 shutout.
With the win, the Eagles improved to 16-2-2 on the season with wins in six of the last seven and a 2-2 tie with Enterprise the only non-win in that stretch.
The Oak Mountain defense has been rolling, giving up two goals or less in every game and one goal or less in all but two games this season, while the shutout against Spain Park marked the ninth of the season.