Less than a week before the first match in the history of the Virginia Peninsula Community College men’s soccer program, coach Kevin Darcy is finalizing the roster and schedule.
Saturday night, he got a good look at his players in a game situation when the Gators traveled to Virginia Beach to scrimmage Regent University. They lost 4-0, but Darcy game away impressed with his team.
“I was proud of the guys because you could see they have some grind about them,” he said. “We’re going to be good.”
The scrimmage was scoreless for about the first 60 minutes, and the Gators missed a good chance early in the second half when a shot went off the crossbar. They gave up all four goals in about a 15-minute span.
“Even though we were gassed, we attacked straight to the end and still had some chances,” said Darcy, who added he had just 12 players make the trip.
He noted the play of center back Jonathan Flores and keeper Keith Utsey.
“We didn’t look out of place, that’s for sure,” he said.
The season officially gets underway Aug. 27 against the College of Southern Maryland at 4 p.m. at Wanner Stadium in Williamsburg, the Gators’ home venue. Their only other home match is Sept. 2 against Mid-Atlantic Christian at 6 p.m. However, they are scheduled for three scrimmages at home: Sept. 13 vs. CNU’s club team, Sept. 24 vs. W&M’s club team; and Oct. 18 vs. Regent.
Their road games are: Aug. 31 at Anne Arundel (Arnold, Md.); Sept. 4 at Cape Fear (Wilmington, N.C..); Sept. 23 at College of Southern Maryland; Sept. 29 at Louisburg College (Louisburg, N.C.); Oct. 13 at Northern Virginia CC; and Oct. 21 at Mid-Atlantic Christian (Elizabeth City, N.C.). The Gators have an away scrimmage Oct. 6 against Shaw University’s reserve team.
“We were able to get good matches against good junior college teams but also some good four-year schools,” Darcy said. “With the late launch of the program, that was a concern … but we have a good schedule.”
Men’s soccer is one of two athletic programs the College added this academic year. The other is cross country/track and field, which will begin competition with the spring outdoor season in 2024. The additions give the College seven intercollegiate sports teams, with two more to be added in the 2024-25 academic year, capping off a three-year expansion of three teams to nine.
For more information on Virginia Peninsula Community College, visit www.vpcc.edu.