Hokies Claim Highlander Classic Title
Virginia Tech beats Mercer 2-1
August 31, 2003

RADFORD, Va. - The Virginia Tech men's soccer team claimed the title of the 2003 Radford Highlander Classic Sunday after knocking off the Mercer Bears 2-1. Coupled with a Radford loss to Delaware, the Hokies finished the tournament 2-0 and claimed the championship.

Hokie senior forward Bobby O'Brien (Williamsburg, Va.) wasted little time in giving his team a 1-0 lead. O'Brien, whose goal was his second of the young season, beat Bear keeper Anthony Pecca with a shot just 2:40 into the match. Junior Bailey Allman (Virginia Beach, Va.) was credited with the assist on the play.

The Hokies jumped on top 2-0 just seventeen minutes later. Hokie speedster Ben Nason (Stafford, Va.) netted his first collegiate goal at 19:12 for the two-goal advantage. Virginia Tech keeper Chase Harrison (Huntington, W. Va.) held the Bears at bay until the 86th minute when Mercer's Del Olaoye slipped a shot past Harrison, ending a 175-minute season-opening scoreless streak for the Hokies' sophomore keeper.

The Hokies gained control of the match early and dominated the tempo of the match throughout as they out shot the Bears 17-3. The Hokies held Mercer to zero shots in the first half, while sending 11 shots toward the Mercer net. O'Brien led the way with six shots. Harrison wasn't challenged heavily by the Bear attack as he was only forced to make one save. The Hokies also held the advantage in corner kicks 8-2.

The Hokies will now be idle this week and then return to action at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 5 for their home-opener. The fourth-ranked Wake Forest Demon Deacons will provide the opposition as Virginia Tech christens its new soccer stadium behind McComas Hall.

              1 2    F
Mercer		      0	1	--	1
Virginia Tech	2	0	--	2

Scoring Summary
VT - Bobby O'Brien (Bailey Allman), 2:40
VT - Ben Nason (unassisted), 19:12
MU - Del Olaoye (Alan Colgan), 85:24