PERKINSTON — Mississippi Gulf Coast's James Redmond dominated his American debut Thursday, scoring four times and assisting once during the Bulldogs' 7-2 thrashing of East Central.
He secured his hat trick in the first half, then added a goal and the assist in the second in Gulf Coast's season-opener at Bary Thrash Field.
"It was a special day for me," Redmond said. "I was very excited to play this game. I'm happy we won."
The freshman from Bremen, Germany, scored twice in the first 12 minutes to help the Bulldogs take a 3-0 lead. Christian Inchima (Fr., St. Edmond Campion/Brampton Ontario) assisted on his first, and Luke Mills (So., Cedars Upper School/Leighton Buzzard, England) on the second.
In between, Dillon Gross (Fr., West Harrison/Gulfport) pounced on a rebound off the post for his first collegiate goal.
The Bulldogs led 4-1 after Mills again set up Redmond with less than two minutes left in the half.
"I don't know what to say," Gulf Coast coach Chris Handy said. "He's a good player, a mature player. I think he's just really getting going, to be honest with you. I think he's just starting to realize what he can accomplish. We're excited to have him, and his teammates are happy to play off him."
Brandon Marquez (Fr., Petal/Petal) scored off an assist from Deon Travis (Fr., Madison Central/Madison) less than a minute into the second half, and Travis made it 6-1 four minutes later by scoring off Redmond's assist.
After East Central scored on a free kick, Redmond picked up his fourth in the 76th minute.
"We're good going forward," Handy said. "We're inexperienced in the back. We're really dangerous attacking. We can give them plenty of different looks. We're pretty talented, to say the least."
Gulf Coast returns to action Saturday when LSU Eunice visits Thrash Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.
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