Coming off a 13-day break between matches, East Hamilton soccer coach John Millard purposely scheduled a match against a tough opponent to see how his team would respond immediately out of spring break.
Pretty well, as it turned out.
The Class A/AA ninth-ranked Hurricanes used two second-half goals to pull away from seventh-ranked Notre Dame and win 3-0.
Millard praised his defense, which didn't allow a shot on goal in the final 40 minutes.
With the Hurricanes coming off break and the Irish currently out of school, play was a little rusty at first. East Hamilton had better possession, but it wasn't until a Notre Dame foul outside the box in the 37th minute that the Hurricanes were able to put a shot through the net, as Kyle Gallups followed up an Alex McCarney free kick to score.
Notre Dame goalkeeper Tim Barnes deflected the initial try by McCarney.
"It took us a little while to get the rust off, but I expected that," Millard said. "It was good to get that first goal."
The Hurricanes possessed better in the second half, and Cooper Loftin and Jose Orellana had impressive goals -- Loftin on a header from a Jonah Goddard cross and Orellana with some nifty footwork on a pass from Robert Miller.
"This is a challenging place to play, so we were just trying to find whatever worked," Millard said. "I thought we controlled play in the second half and were a lot better in the second half than we were the first."
Contact Gene Henley at email@example.com or 423-757-6311. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/genehenleytfp.