PHCC men’s soccer steals win over NOVA with late goal

September 9, 2013

1157546_632555750109381_1133205299_nPHCC men’s soccer steals win over NOVA with late goal

Maldonado delivers free kick winner

Sunday, September 8, 2013

By CHRIS PRIDE – Bulletin Sports Writer

It’s been well documented over the last season and a half that the Patrick Henry Community Community men’s soccer team hasn’t had the best of luck pulling out tight matches late.

Looking destined for overtime Saturday against Northern Virginia Community College and playing a man down, PHCC freshman Daniel Maldonado took matters into his own hands to change the Patriots’ fate inside the final five minutes.
Maldonado struck a line drive free kick from 25 yards out inside the right channel to the upper-90 of the far side in the 86th minute to lift PHCC to a 2-1 win in the Stifel Nicolaus Invitational at the Smith River Sports Complex in Martinsville.
“It’s just practice. It’s an easy goal you just have to practice and practice that shot,” Maldonado said. “When you get a chance like that, your eyes widen out and that’s what you wait for. We knew we’d get a chance, just had to capitalize on it.”
PHCC (6-1) created a few quality chances in the first half, but NOVA goalkeeper Justin Jones denied each attempt at goal.
In the opening 10 minutes, Jake Sharpe had a good look from the top of the six-yard box on a flicked header that Jones just tipped over. Minutes later defender Lucas Prillaman pushed forward through the right channel and ripped a shot aimed for the lower left corner steered away by a diving Jones.
Meanwhile, his offense staked him to a 1-0 lead in the 14th minute when Ronaldo Reyter headed a shot on goal off a free kick which was saved by Patriots goalie Bill Ison. But the rebound fell right to Mario Bazan unmarked for an easy finish.
Prillaman then tried his luck again, this time on a free kick, but hit the crossbar from 25 yards out inside the right channel nearly equalizing the match in the 32nd minute.
It was clear to PHCC head coach Scott Haywood, however, that his team wasn’t ready to play for the opening 45 minutes.
“At halftime time we talked about what we were doing well which wasn’t much. And talked about what we needed to do better in the second half,” Haywood said. “We wanted to relate things to what we’ve been working on in practice. We fed the outside mids a lot more in the second half.”
The Patriots outshot NOVA 11-2 in the second half, putting eight of those shots on goal. Northern Virginia had its luck change when Jones apparently broke his hand while trying to grab a cross in the air but was struck by the boot of Marvin Soyka on a bicycle kick attempt. Soyka just minutes later received his second yellow card and was sent off after pulling down a NOVA player on the attack.
“We still have to do a better job at keeping our composure in matches like this,” Haywood said afterwards.
The Patriots finally broke through though in the 65th minute after Jones was injured when Uli Rios was able to slip behind the defense on a through-ball, beat backup keeper Abdel Alnimiry to the ball, made a simple touch around him and slid the ball home for the equalizer.
“It looked like everyone was asleep and didn’t come to play in the first half. We talked about things at halftime and the more experienced people helped bring us back up,” Maldonado said. “We had to get a goal in the first 10 or 20 minutes of the second half, otherwise we wouldn’t have a chance.”
Maldonado almost had the winner 11 minutes prior to his free kick when his header from close range was saved by an acrobatic Alnimiry over the bar.
“The positives are that we responded by being down at the half for the first time,” Haywood said. “Also we didn’t give up a winning goal in the final minutes. It was a burden off our back showing we can score in the last few minutes and can take the game home. We had some great chances, and their keeper, before he got injured, made some really nice saves, as did their backup.”
The Patriots play at noon today against Hagerstown Community College back at the SRSC.

Filed under: Men's Soccer