Coaches often times have the front row seat to witness athletic milestones in their player's careers and that's exactly the case for Northwestern soccer coach Dom Wren.
Entering Tuesday night's Region 3-AAAA matchup with Nation Ford, Trojans star forward Enzo Martinez needed to score only one goal to reach 100 goals for his career. The junior entered the season with 93 and has scored seven through the first four games this season.
Northwestern, ranked No. 4 in this week's Class AAAA poll, sailed past Nation Ford 6-0 Tuesday night and improves to 3-1, 1-0 in the region, while the Falcons drop to 1-4, 0-2.
After struggling to find many open looks on the goal for most of his time on the field, the story of the night unfolded in the 58th minute when Martinez was taken down inside the box and awarded a penalty kick. He calmly placed his shot to the left of Nation Ford goalkeeper Steve Zubkoff to net his 100th career goal.
"I was really frustrated and wasn't playing well (in the first half) and got that one chance and put it away," he said before quickly praising the supporting play of his teammates who have helped him reach the milestone.
Juniors Zack Clark, one goal and two assists, and Shawn Ferguson, two goals, stole the show on the night when Martinez reached the century mark.
Clark put the Trojans on the board in the 18th minute after taking a pass from freshman Ricardo Garbonzo. Ferguson netted his first goal in the 52nd minute and scored his second on an assist from Clark in the 68th minute to give the Trojans a 5-0 lead.
With nearly two full seasons remaining, the state record of 141 set by former Andrew Jackson standout Kyle Izzard is well within reach.
Wren admits that coaching Martinez for the past five years, including two seasons with Discoveries Soccer Club prior to him being eligible for varsity play in 2006, has been getting to see not only Martinez, but all players, turn into a young man.
"As I've said a hundred times before," he said. "Enzo is a fantastic soccer player but an even better person. I feel privileged to have seen him develop as a player and as a person."
Martinez is complimented on the field by his younger brother, sophomore Alex. The duo has something special and Wren seems to think the pair have a telepathic connection when they're on the field together.
The older Martinez admits it would have been sweeter to have scored his 100th goal off an assist from Alex, but is satisfied with the accomplishment. It was not for a lack of effort as the two were unable to connect as Nation Ford's defense flustered them both. While the younger Martinez didn't hook up with his brother, he did provide an assist to Garbonzo in the 55th minute.
Northwestern next plays at York on Friday night before a rematch of last year's state championship game with Spring Valley, the state's top-ranked team. The Vikings and Trojans have met in the state championship game with Northwestern winning in 2006 and Spring Valley in 2007.
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