Hat trick

Nick Pope scored two of his three goals in the first half against Childersburg on Thursday afternoon.

LINCOLN -- Nick Pope scored three goals to lead Lincoln High School’s boys soccer team past Childersburg 6-0 in on Thursday.

Pope has 49 goals on the season and is now four shy of becoming second all-time in Alabama High School Athletic Association history.

“I think we played really good as a team,” Pope said. “I know that I had three (goals). One came off a corner (kick) in the second half. In the first half, one came off a PK (penalty kick). Then one they gave me space up the middle, and I shot it. It was a good shot, and the keeper couldn't block it.

“We played OK in the first half. We could’ve played better. We couldn’t moved the ball around as much as we wanted to. I think we played better in the second half.”

Pope scored two goals in the first 12 minutes.

Jaylen Hudson scored a goal with 9:39 left in the first half, pushing the lead to 3-0.

Da’Zhone Finley scored with 6:21 remaining before halftime, and the margin grew to 4-0.

Lincoln head coach Michael Duff thought his team fed off the student body’s energy in the first half.

“I thought we came out against a really good crowd,” Duff said. “The kids were energized because they finally got to play in front of the students.

“The biggest thing is the kids wanted to show the game to the kids that have never seen soccer before or got to experience soccer before. Maybe we can recruit some of those middle schoolers to come to tryouts. This is  a building block for our future.”

The Golden Bears got on the board early in the second half and put the game out of reach.

With 37:41 left, Pope scored his third goal off an assist from Hudson on a corner kick.

Grayson Phillips scored a late goal to increase the lead to 6-0.

The Golden Bears’ defense recorded its third straight shutout and its eighth of the season.

“It is a great job by our defense line, (led) by our center backs, Micheal Morrison and Davis Malone,” Duff said. “They are our rocks back there. Dawson (Stanford) and Ethan (Nabors) played good today. They were able to keep pressure off of our keeper as there were no shots early. We were able to play some stuff up top and get some early goals.”