Saints score second TCIS win

Published 10:25 pm Tuesday, October 20, 2009

It’s been a tough season most of the way for Nansemond-Suffolk’s boys soccer team this fall, but the Saints took a step in the right direction on Friday and continued on Tuesday.

On Friday, NSA trailed 2-0 10 minutes into the match before scoring five straight goals to beat conference foe Norfolk Christian. On Tuesday against visiting Peninsula Catholic, the Saints (5-11, 2-5) gained another Tidewater Conference win by a 4-2 score.

With nine goals in the last two matches, the focus would seemingly go to NSA’s offense for the improved results and that’s certainly part of it.

NSA’s head coach Art Truesdell gives a large part of the credit though to senior midfielder-turned-sweeper Brock Barbeau.

Barbeau was NSA’s leading scorer and had the second-highest point total in the TCIS before the coach had him switch positions to help give NSA’s defense more organization and athleticism.

“He’s been really unselfish and he’s doing it for the team, because he was second in the conference in points before moving and I’m sure he’s not there any longer,” said Truesdell.

“His action has given us a sense of team and in these last two games we’re really played as a team,” said Truesdell.

Even in a defensive position, Barbeau added to his offensive stats on Tuesday with a goal and an assist. Center midfielder Parke Babiy scored the first and fourth goals for the Saints. Chris Sharrett, at forward on Tuesday even though he’s listed as a midfielder/defender on NSA’s roster, scored a goal.

The Saints showed good passing and quick attacking early in the game and it didn’t take long for it to turn into goals.

In the 13th minute, Travis Brothers sent a perfectly-placed pass behind the Peninsula Catholic defenders, but in front of the Knights’ goalie. Babiy sprinted onto the pass and chipped his shot over the oncoming keeper to score.

Eight minutes later, and after a couple near-misses for the Saints, Sharrett controlled a pass from midfield from McCloud Brown. Sharrett’s first shot was saved by the keeper coming out to cut down the angle, but Sharrett was quick to the rebound and scored into the empty goal.

The Knights scored in the 30th minute and the Saints had to keep going in the second half to put the match away.

Six minutes into the second half, NSA gained a corner kick giving Barbeau a chance to come into the attack. The Knights partially cleared the corner kick, but Jeffrey Ruland sent in another cross from the right wing. The ball deflected to the top of the PC box and Barbeau scored with a right-footed shot from about 20 yards away.

NSA made it 4-1 four minutes later with Barbeau and Babiy combining. Another set piece, this time a free kick just to the left of the Knight box, set up the scoring chance. Barbeau took the free kick and lofted a cross into the middle of the PC box; Babiy was on the spot, out-jumping a defender for a sharp header into the goal.

The two conference wins put the Saints in good shape to make the eight-team TCIS Tournament that starts in a week. NSA closes its regular season with two more matches this week; on Thursday hosting Norfolk Collegiate and on Friday at Christchurch.