Against the odds!

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Stephen Dilks
Published Tuesday, December 23, 2008

As we gathered at 7:20 on Monday night, watching the previous game, preparing ourselves for a late start, the Omega Adults were subdued.  The other team was also gathering and not one seemed to be over twenty-two.  We had a sub for every position plus an extra sub in mid-field, but the other team had as many subs and gave every impression they would outrun and outwork us.  We had to organize ourselves.

We began, then, with trepidation. But we also had a plan.  After handling the first two onslaughts, Miguel and I knew we could keep pace if we stuck to the plan to switch after short spells with Mike M. and Matt, keeping as fresh as possible in anticipation of a long hard game.  Before we switched, Manny took a nice pass from Kyle, faked their goalie and slipped a goal into the lower left corner. Our team was working together, passing the ball through mid-field instead of just kicking, and we quickly answered after they tied the score, going into period two at 2-1. The advantage was ours and we benefited because our defenders could afford to probe deeper into mid-field to interrupt their forwards before they mounted effective attacks.

We were up against some very fast players, but played smart defence and midfield; we rarely got caught in two-on-ones and we pushed forward quickly enough with some tidy quick passes to keep the pressure in their end.  At the half we were up 4-2 on goals by Kyle, Manny (2), and Francisco: Kyle's was a particularly nice goal because Manny drew their defence to the right side, leaving Kyle with a clean strike at goal when Carlitos passed to the top of the D.

As the game went on it was never entirely clear who would win.  The other team mounted excellent pressure through mid-field and we had to scramble to keep up, but we did. Mike Reilly made some excellent saves, holding text-book perfect position to stop shots. A couple of silly goals, one caused because I made a bad substitution, another because we let the ball sit too long in the box (a goal was called even though no-one except the ref saw it cross the line), brought the game to 5-4.  But we prevailed, benefitting from an important goal by Carlitos and a final back-breaker by Manny.   Final score 7-4.

Last update on 12/23/2008
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