Tigers Beat Pine-Richland
by Brian Jewell
The NA Boys Soccer Team continued their section schedule with a rare Friday night game, played at Pine Stadium. The action started early with a hard run by Andy Earle earning a corner kick in the 2nd minute, followed by a 35 yard shot just high by senior Sean Dickerson in the 4th minute.
The teams settled into a midfield battle over the next ten minutes with excellent defensive pressure applied against Pines left sided attack provided by senior defenders Andy Mahler and Alex Dorazio.
In the 15th minute senior Sean Dickerson hit a beautiful long left to right through ball the right wing, ending with a close offside call. Senior Nick Jewell then shortly after took two successive hard shots from the right each handled by the Pine net minder
The Pine team attempted to mount a series of fast breaks, stopped with strong defensive work and a good offside trap. The Rams returned the favor defensively in the 1st half displaying aggressive and physical play in defense with their solid 2nd defender work keeping early crosses to a minimum.
In the 27th minute senior Alex Dorazio earned a foul outside the box. A direct kick by junior Steve Binnig was too hot to handle and rebounded into the field of play by the Pine keeper. Minutes later senior Andy Mahler hit a nice long strike, catching the keeper out of position and almost scoring. The game went back and forth with Pine showing momentum earning three corners just before half time. NA weathered the onslaught though with a 0-0 tie at the half.
Although the 2nd half began with another Pine Richland push, things were soon to change. In the 48th minute junior Steve Binnig sent a long ball left to right to wing Nick Jewell. Jewell crossed the ball hard to the far post where it was finished nicely for the 1st goal, scored by Peter Tobias. NA 1-0 PR
Tobias minutes later provided a strong left sided run to the goal line followed by a heads up pass back into the central penalty area. This was struck nicely by senior Andrew Earle, missing just high.
Nice 1 v 1 dribbling skills were displayed in the 57th minute by junior Sam Conti with a solid cross finished with what appeared to be a behind the leg flick shot by sophomore Alex Gill providing goal #2. NA 2-0 PR
Action was back and forth until the 70th minute when senior Nick Jewell struck a hard cross from the right goal line on the ground straight across the goalmouth. This was finished beautifully by Andrew Earle for a solid goal. NA 3-0 PR
Nick Jewell was taken down in the box in the 81st minute. He converted the penalty for the 4th goal. NA 4-0 PR
Senior Zack Nimmo and junior Sean Tao provided solid defensive work in the second half, along with junior Rafael Bergman in the midfield.
In the final 4 minutes a hard shot by Nick Jewell was rebounded and then nicely finished by a charging Sam Conti for the 5th and final NA Goal. NA 5 – 0 PR FINAL