On Thursday, February 11th, the Gates County Barons traveled down to Roanoke Island to take on your Manteo Redskins. The Redskins were fresh off a tough conference win against Camden the night before while the Barons were still searching for their first win.
The Baron’s kicked off to start the game, and the Redskins initiated an immediate high press to win the ball back in the own attacking half. The ball was quickly won and Manteo subsequently seemed to possess the ball for most of the half.
Gates County organized defensive low blocks in an effort to make it difficult for fluid attacking play by the Redskins. Manteo did well to play quickly with two to three touches in possession and applied good off the ball movement to maintain possession. They were able to get on the scoreboard in the first five minutes and the goals continued to poor in consistently afterward.
Oscar Rivera continued his good attacking form from the previous night by getting himself in the stat book first. He was set by a layoff from Andrew Hayman. Rivera then led his defender one way before cutting back the other way to blast a shot from outside the 18-yard box with his left foot. The placement was poor as he hit it directly at the goalkeepers chest, but the ball was absolutely crushed and the goalkeeper could not withstand the brute force of the shot to keep the ball from finding its way into the back of the net.
Minutes later, Trent Hayman played the ball in from a corner kick into the top of the six yard box. Noah Goetsch made his way through a sea of bodies to place his foot squarely on the ball as he flew through the air towards the goal. The ball banged into the side netting to make it 2-0.
Goetsch made it a brace shortly after his first goal as Trent Hayman did well to recycle a ball out off a long cross, from the left wing. Justin Ortega-Santos brought the ball down sent back in from Hayman and set it perfectly for Goetsch. Goetsch struck it well on his first touch and placed it squarely into the top corner.
Andrew Hayman bulled his way into the 18-yard box to fire off a low, driven shot that beat the keeper on his far post. Oscar Rivera followed up Hayman’s goal with a beautifully bent free-kick from atop the 18-yard box to make it 5-0. As Manteo lined up mass substitutions along the sideline, Goetsch cemented his hat-trick before he could be taken off the pitch.
Richard Hernandez received a ball into space down the left-flank from Rivera and drew an immediate defender. Hernandez cut the ball back to loose his defender and then played a cross into the box. Goetsch had originally made a run in expecting the cross on the first look from Hernandez. When Hernandez cut it back, Goetsch, quickly cycled back out to the penalty marker and Hernandez’s cross found him in space. Goetsch headed the ball cleanly past the goalkeeper to earn his first hat-trick of the season.
By the time it was 6-0, the Manteo lineup was comprised mostly of freshmen and other younger players looking to show their worth on the pitch. The Redskins did a tremendous job of moving the ball about the pitch with a purpose, often led by the instruction of freshman center-back, Eddie Turberville, who was directing play from the back.
After one of the few times Gates County was able to work the ball down into their attacking half and push their formation forward, Manteo right-back, Luis Flores, was able to quickly win the ball back and outlet to Grey Clark on the right flank. Clark quickly found the striker, Aiden Braswell, who had made a diagonal run out wide. Braswell took a collecting touch forward to race down the sideline, beat his final defender to turn the corner as he entered the 18-yard box near the end-line, and then picked his head up to find Dylan Jones making a central run. Braswell cut it back to Jones, and Jones taped it home on his first touch to cement his first varsity goal of his career.
Braswell would later get in on the scoring to earn his stripes as a striker as he cleaned up a bouncing ball amidst heavy traffic inside the six yard box. Braswell made it a brace just before the closing of the first half after Jones played him into the 18-yard box with a perfectly weighted slip pass. With only the goalkeeper to beat, Braswell calmly placed the ball into the side netting to make it 9-0 just before half.
Upon the halftime whistle, the game would end in a mercy rule.
Coach Cleaver stated after the game, “This was a great opportunity to take a look at our entire squad out on the pitch. Our starters got things rolling early as they were focused on the task at hand. When our subs took over, I was highly impressed with their commitment to moving the ball through combination play. I saw a lot of great things from everyone tonight and this was a nice win to bring the team together. Hats off the to Gates County as they played their hardest the entire game and never quit.”
Noah Goetsch: 3 goals, 1 assist
Oscar Rivera: 2 goals
Andrew Hayman: 1 goal
Aiden Braswell: 2 goals, 1 assist
Dylan Jones: 1 goal, two assists
Richard Hernandez: 1 assist
Trent Hayman: 1 assist
Justin Ortega: 1 assist
|Pass Success Rate||80%||53%|