Quintessential Delwin Hernandez made yet another appearance in Glen Cove's 4-1 soccer win over Roslyn last Friday.
With Glen Cove leading 1-0 early in the second half, the junior forward took a pass from midfield, dribbled around a defender and bent one into the upper corner from 25 yards out.
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"He saw the opportunity, took what they gave," coach Brian Smith said. "It was just a very accurate shot."
These traits -- vision and precision -- have become tied to Hernandez since he scored against No. 2 Lawrence and netted a winner against Lynbrook as a freshman.
Glen Cove has a deep, balanced team, but Hernandez has been the heart and soul of an offense that features "six or seven guys that could all be 10-goal scorers," according to Smith. The threat created by that bevy of options has opened up the field for Hernandez, Nassau's top returning points scorer in 2014 (10 goals, seven assists). He has five goals and five assists in four games this season. Glen Cove has 12 goals.
"They're all great players," Hernandez said of the team's forwards and midfielders. "They understand the game. They understand how to move. I love playing with them. They always move to the right spots. That's what helps me out."
Because Hernandez is as precise a passer as he is a scorer, teammates cut properly, and Hernandez hits their foot in stride.
"He's just such a good passer," said Smith, who started Hernandez at attacking midfield as a freshman for that reason. "He anticipates where players are supposed to move to, and he just sends the ball there."
Glen Cove is 2-0 in Nassau A-II and 3-1 overall, the loss coming to Plainview JFK of Class AA. Going into Saturday's game at Floral Park, the Big Red defense -- led by Kevin Hernandez (no relation), Hernan Bonilla and goalkeeper Dante Castillo -- has allowed three goals. That combined with the offense's depth has Glen Cove thinking last year's success could be topped. The Big Red earned the No. 8 seed and fell to No. 1 Great Neck North on penalty kicks in a county quarterfinal.
"The playoffs are really intense," Delwin Hernandez said. "You just have to get used to the flow of the game. The start of that [quarterfinal] game, we were crazy lost. You've just got to keep up with the flow and momentum of the game."
Hernandez has been focused on maintaining a high intensity level in games and practices.
"I always try to carry myself with a lot of intensity," Hernandez said. "For me, how you carry yourself is how you're going to play."
His coach has taken note.
"He never stops working," Smith said.
Hernandez has his eye on the prize: a county championship. He will try for another precise delivery.