VIRGINIA BEACH -- If uniforms worn by the Virginia Wesleyan College men's soccer team looked a little mismatched Saturday night just blame the weather.
The Marlins' whites turned into various shades of tan and brown as VWC opened Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) play against the Eastern Mennonite University Royals in a steady downpour that muddied Foster Field at the Trinder Center.
But the rain, which blew across Foster Field in sheets from time to time, failed to hamper the efforts of the host Marlins, who utilized their speed and depth to help post an impressive 4-1 victory.
Sophomore Tanner Martin (York, Pa./Suburban) put the Marlins (2-2-1 1-0) in the lead in the 20th minute after he fired the ball into the left side of the net, finishing off a pass from senior Isaac Arrington (DeSoto, Texas/Midlothian (Texas]). It was the first of three assists in the game by Arrington, who used his quickness to slip past EMU defenders to set up teammates for shots.
VWC threatened several times in the first half, producing several shots that just missed the mark. Brandon St. Amour (Stafford/Mountain View) fired one of those shots with 4:37 remaining in the half off a corner kick, but EMU goalie Andrew Yoder (Harrisonburg/Eastern Mennonite) stopped the ball at the base of the right post.
EMU's best opportunity to score in the half took place late in the half when Juan Luna ripped off a shot that glanced off the cross bar.
Virginia Wesleyan jumped in front 2-0 with about nine minutes played in the second half when sophomore Robert Holschuh (Eagle, Wis./Milwaukee Piux XI) put the ball into the net on a short shot from the left side, set up by an Arrington pass.
EMU wasted little time in answering however, as Mark Mast (Harrisonburg/Eastern Mennonite) scored just 22 seconds later on a shot in close from the right side.
Matters did not stay close for long though as senior Chris Cooke (Hampton/Phoebus) gave the Marlins a 3-1 lead on a booming shot from the left from about 25 yards outs. Five minutes later the Marlins led 4-1 after senior Philip Smith (Fredericksburg/Massaponax) scored from the left, set up by Arrington's third assist of the game.
VWC returns to action on Wednesday, Sept. 17, in non-conference play at Wesley College at 7 p.m.