GREENVILLE — The Riverheads High School boys soccer team returned to familiar territory Tuesday night, dispatching visiting Rappahannock County 4-1 in the first round of the Region 1B Tournament.
The Gladiators behind a hat trick from sophomore attacker Ab Knight, jumped out right away on Knight's goal from the opening kickoff which was passed by senior Jack Matherly.
"It came from Jack's pass across the box and I put it in with my left foot," Knight said.
Two more Riverheads' shots sailed over the bar and a flurry of activity in front of the Panthers' net in the 23rd minute came up lacking.
Rappahannock County equalized with 10 minutes remaining in the half on a follow-up shot.
In the second half, the Red Pride took over control of the match and dominated play. Constantly putting the Rappahannock goalie under pressure, the Gladiators received an abundance of corner kicks.
Finally, Riverheads took the lead for good when opportunistic senior captain Joseph Huffer followed up a shot which was fumbled by the goalkeeper.
A long shot by Knight fell in for the third goal at the 27:18 mark and Knight completed the scoring with his third goal with just under three minutes to play.
"We had just been practicing attacking in the final third and we played what we practiced," said RHS head coach Scott Harrison. "In the second half we put three up top and we overwhelmed them."
With the win, the Gladiators now must face district rival Stonewall Jackson in Quicksburg on Thursday.
The Generals defeated Riverheads twice during the regular season.
"We have to have a short memory when it comes to them and we have to have quick passing and let the ball do the work because they're quick," Matherly said.
Coach Harrison agreed, stating that Riverheads (7-10-1 overall) would come ready to play and would have to move the ball around due to Stonewall's quickness.