PHCC Men Drop Match to Louisburg

October 11, 2013

1383030_654486254582997_1206385008_nLouisburg College head men’s soccer coach Cristian Neagu insisted after his team’s 9-2 win over Patrick Henry Community College on Wednesday there was no intent to send a message against a Patriot team that played them tough in the teams’ last meeting.

Patriots head coach Scott Haywood felt otherwise.

“I just think they were more intense and weren’t happy about getting two draws in their last few matches,” Haywood said. “We did really well at their place for most of the game and this was like a revenge game for them. I think there was some intent there with their starters still in with 10 minutes to go.”

The Hurricanes trailed 1-0 before before turning up the heat with six second-half goals in their NJCAA Region X match at the Smith River Sports Complex. Louisburg had six different goal-scorers. Adrian Gonzales was one of two for the visitors to have multiple goals. The Hurricanes also benefitted from a Patriots own goal

PHCC lost 4-3 earlier this season at Louisburg, playing from ahead late in the match.

“There’s never any intent to send a message. I don’t believe that. We’ve been playing poor and we needed to play better,” Neagu said. “We had a lot of things that needed to get better for us, we haven’t finished well and today wasn’t about anyone other than ourselves. It was about winning tackles, connecting passes and competing hard.”

It was a dream start for PHCC (10-4-1, 5-3-1), getting on the board first in the seventh minute. Bryson Collins started the attack up the right wing with a pass to Daniel Maldonado in stride. Maldonado used his speed and sent a perfect ball across to the far post on the counter right to the boot of Oscar Ulloa for an easy finish and a 1-0 lead.

Haywood said he enjoyed watching the execution of his team’s scoring play.

However, in swift retribution, the Hurricanes responded and evened the score two minutes later, then took the lead two minutes after that. Gerron Dewberry put home an easy look on the back post on a simple cross and Ramzey Hassen gave Louisburg the lead for good in the 11th minute on a play stemming from a corner. Hassen earned the corner after Patriots keeper Bill Ison made a good save on him charging up the middle.

“It’s a great sign of a great team when you go down so early and respond right away. I’m very proud of my guys in how they responded tonight,” Neagu said. ‘We finished our chances and we played well.”

Ison helped keep it a one-goal match for most of the opening half by making two reactionary saves on open-look headers from the six-yard box. He could not, however, stop Gonzales first goal of the match in the 39th minute. Off a PHCC giveaway up the right sideline, looking to clear the ball, Hassan Kouyateh gathered the clearance and whipped in a cross to the far post for the open header.

“What killed us tonight were too many mistakes. We turned the ball over, wouldn’t mark up and it was just mental mistakes,” Haywood said. “I think initially on their first goal we got nervous because we were up 1-0 against a really good team.”

Thirty-four seconds into the second half on a nearly identical cross, Gonzales made it 4-1 with another easy finish. Patrick Henry’s Jake Sharpe answered right back not even a minute later by finishing a flicked through header on a throw in. But goals in the 57th and 61st minutes — both of the highlight variety — put the match fully out of reach.

Louisburg added goals in the 77th and 90th minutes to top off the scoring

Ison made nine saves in net for the Patriots as his offense in front of him was outshot 30-6.

PHCC has a big weekend coming up with a road test at USC-Salkehatchie on Saturday before returning home Sunday to play USC-Spartanburg. Wins in those matches could position the Patriots in a spot to host an opening round Region X match.

“This was a good tune-up for this weekend. We got practice (today) and Friday and we can see what we did and didn’t do well,” Haywood said. “As a coach you want to learn all you can in losses like this one. It helps expose our weaknesses and the areas we need to grow in.”


Filed under: Men's Soccer