On Wednesday, March 3rd, your Manteo Redskins traveled to the town of Hertford to take on the Perquimans Pirates in their first conference rematch. Manteo was fresh off a week long quarantine and were eager to find their previous top level form. In their previous fixture against the Pirates, Manteo made quick work of the Pirates with a 10-0 score line by the end of the first half. In that contest, Manteo was able to quickly exploit a Perquimans high line, finding lots of space to play into, and get quality looks at goal.
In the rematch fixture, Perquimans would make sure not to repeat the same fate against the prolific Redskin attack as they drastically adjusted their tactics. The Pirates left their former 4-3-3 formation for a 6-3-1 formation in an effort to make it difficult for the Redskins to score.
Perquiman’s pitch is the widest field the Redskins play on and they utilized the width to draw the plethora of defenders away from goal, opening up a bit more space for quality attacking chances. Manteo was on the ball early, and dominated possession throughout the game as the Pirates sat back with little options to play out too. Manteo was able to earn several early crosses and shots on goal, keeping the Pirates pinned back.
It was Manteo’s striker, Andrew Hayman, who got the Redskins on the scoreboard first. Oscar Rivera cracked a hard and swerving shot from the top of the box. The keeper positioned in front of the shot but found it difficult to wrap it up. The ball bounced off the goalkeeper and Hayman quickly pounced on the rebound to knock it in the back of the net.
Anytime the Pirates were able to get the ball out from their own defensive end, Manteo’s backline did well to quickly dispossess their isolated attackers. Ten minutes into the first half, Manteo center-back, Yeifer Perez stepped up to intercept a pass near the midline. Perez took a forward touch and picked his head up to spot Trent Hayman making a run in behind the backline on the right flank. Perez played a beautifully weighted ball over the top of the backline that sat perfectly for Hayman just inside the 18-yard box. Trent Hayman drew the attention of the defenders and the goalkeeper. Just as they all closed in on Hayman, he cleverly squared the ball over to Andrew Hayman for the tap in to a wide open goal. Hayman’s brace made the early score line 2-0 in favor of Manteo.
Over the next twenty minutes of play, Manteo continued to dominate the run of play. Beautiful combination play through the midfield created lots of looks on goal, and earned several corner kicks. Manteo often utilized their backline to drop and switch the point of attack and fullbacks were often in advanced positions to support their wingers and provide early service into the 18-yard box.
In the thirty ninth minute of play, Andrew Hayman earned a hat-trick with a well placed shot, curled into the side-netting that left the goalkeeper standing still. His shot was set up by Trent Hayman, as he danced around on the ball on the left flank before cutting inside, drawing the attention of the center back, and squaring the ball over to his brother once again.
Manteo entered the halftime period with a comfortable 3-0 lead and complete control of the game. The halftime talk would center around finishing and making the most of the numerous chances created through their quality play.
In the second half, Manteo continued to keep the ball in their own attacking half, but continued to struggle to find the back of the net. They would not score again until 20 minutes into the second half when a penalty kick was earned. Noah Goetsch stepped up to take the spot kick. The goal keeper did well to get a touch on the shot, but Goetsch had to much power on the shot, and the ball deflected off the keeper and into the back of net.
Minutes after Goetsch’s goal, Oscar Rivera would finally find the back of the net after a run of near misses and blocked shots. Rivera had been on the ball quite a bit through the game but had yet to beat the goalkeeper as he had made a quality save on the goal-line off a Rivera header, and then deflected one of his long range shots to deflect the ball off the post and out of play. River gave the goalkeeper no chance for a save on this shot as he collected a ball that popped out to the top of the box off a corner kick. River took a collecting touch and then a touch to set his shot up around two defenders. Rivera then blistered the ball, stinging the back of the net to give Manteo a 5-0 lead.
In the seventy third minute of play, Dylan Jones received a throw-in down the right flank. As Jones collected, he faced up his first defender and beat him down the line, and then turned inward to face a second defender. Jones beat his second defender with quick and clever touches and then picked his head up to square the ball across into the six-yard box. Manteo striker, Ivy Midgett, had positioned well and made a well timed run in on the square ball to tap it in to the back of the net.
In the final couple minutes of the game, a Pirate defender swept the feet of Jones inside the 18-yard box and Manteo was awarded a second penalty kick. This time, Perez stepped up to take the penalty kick. Perez placed the ball in the side netting to earn his first goal of the season. The game would end in favor of the Redskins with a 7-0 score-line.
Coach Cleaver stated after the game, “A win and a clean sheet is the result we were after, so I am happy with that. Perquimans made things difficult with ample defenders, but we certainly looked like we had a week off prior to the game. Not to be greedy, but when we have 45 shots, I expect more than seven goals. However, I am very pleased with our combination play and utter control of the game. We had a few new players just join us from the basketball team, so it was nice to get a look at them in the game. Midgett did well in his positioning and earned himself a quality goal in his first game back with us. I am most pleased with our focus at the back, as they have been diligent to keep a string of clean sheets and I wish that continue as long as possible.”
Yeifer Perez: 1 goal
Dylan Jones: 1 assist
Trent Hayman: 2 assist
Ivy Midgett: 1 goal
Oscar Rivera: 1 goal
Andrew Hayman: 3 goals
Noah Goetsch: 1 goal
|Pass Success Rate||68%||32%|