By DAVE O’SULLIVAN Publisher BUENA VISTA – The St. Augustine Prep boys soccer team scored nine goals in its first three games as it got out to a 3-0 start. The offense is clicking early in the season, but perhaps more impressive has been the Hermits’ defense. Through the first three games they hadn’t allowed a goal. Make that four. The host Hermits got a goal in the 25th minute from striker Niko Basolis and the defense made it stand up for a 1-0 victory over Ocean City on Wednesday afternoon in a matchup of teams that likely will be battling for the Cape-Atlantic League’s American Conference championship this season. The Clark brothers, Ben and Alex, led a strong defensive effort as Prep keeper Ryan Brown faced only one serious threat, making a save on a shot off a corner kick early in the second half. Ben Clark of St. Augustine redirects a ball to keep it away from Ocean City's Donnie VanMeter. Ben Clark of St. Augustine redirects a ball to keep it away from Ocean City’s Donnie VanMeter. Bogushefsky said the Hermits didn’t really have a decided advantage playing on their turf field. His players are used to playing on a fast surface at their own Tennessee Avenue complex in Ocean City. “We play on a field that gets taken care of by the golf course and gets cut every day, so we can’t blame it too much on that. We just got a win on Saturday at Haddonfield on the turf,” Bogushefsky said. “You put the players together and the game is the game, either way.” Bogushefsky said the loss might prove to be a positive for his players because it shows what they will need to improve upon to beat some of the top competition in South Jersey. “In that sense, I don’t mind it because you learn a lot more from your losses than you do your wins,” Bogushefsky said. Ocean City faces a tough stretch before the state playoff qualifying deadline, taking on Vineland and Egg Harbor Township at home before a string of five straight road games before a rematch at home against St. Augustine on Oct. 15. Contact Dave O’Sullivan:; on Twitter @GDsullysays  [adsense]