BIGLERVILLE >> Having already claimed the Mid Penn Colonial Division title and clinched a ticket to the conference tournament that comes with it, Greencastle-Antrim took another step toward securing a berth in the District 3 Class AAA boys soccer tournament with a 4-0 victory over Biglerville on Saturday morning at Musselman Stadium.
G-A (12-3) entered the match holding the 13th spot in the district rankings, with 20 teams earning berths. The win was the Devils' seventh in their last eight matches.
"We're playing well, but we have some tough matches still to go," G-A coach Scott Gelsinger said. "We have games with Camp Hill and Carlisle this upcoming week and those will both really test us."
Sophomore striker Brandon Stuhler netted his second hat trick of the season, bumping his season goal total to 14 in the process. He got the Devils on the board at 28:01 of the opening half off an assist from Josh Kline, who played him a through ball. Stuhler shot the ball past Biglerville keeper Mitchell Thomas as Thomas charged off his line.
Greencastle doubled the lead when Luke Herman pocketed an unassisted goal, his second of the campaign, with 24:16 to play until halftime.
Then Stuhler scored again with 13:00 left in the half.
Despite not being able to crack the scoreboard, Biglerville (10-5) managed to play the Devils even in the shots on goal category in the first half, 4-4. But Blue Devil keeper Bryson Robinson made a few nifty saves to keep the Canners off the board and keep the shutout intact. It was his ninth clean sheet of the season.
"Bryson is only a sophomore and he's improved so much during the season," Gelsinger said. "He and our backline have developed some good chemistry and they work very well together."
Stuhler completed his hat trick when Kaleb Hurley found him open close to the net with 37:46 to play. Hurley played the ball from middle to right and Stuhler beat Thomas to the near post.
"It was big to score early in the second half. They could've gotten some momentum if they have scored first," Stuhler said. "I try to go hard to the ball and finish when I have the chance to."
For the match, G-A led in shots on goal, 10-6, while Biglerville earned more corners, 3-2.
"They're a very direct team and they're efficient at kick and run," Biglerville coach Jebb Nelson said of the Devils. "They got some through balls against us into space and were able to put them in. It took us a half to figure out how to defend against it and that's not good."
Greencastle 4, Biglerville 0
First half — (GA) Brandon Stuhler, asst. Josh Kline, 28:01, (GA) Luke Herman, 24:16, (GA) Stuhler, 13:00.
Second half — (GA) Stuhler, asst. Kaleb Hurley, 37:46.
Shots on goal — GA 10, Bigl 6; Corner kicks — GA 3, Bigl 2; Saves — GA 6 (Bryson Robinson), Bigl 6 (Mitchell Thomas).