Oaks boot five past NSA

Published 11:08 pm Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Finding a way: Nansemond-Suffolk senior Jeffrey Ruland tries to find a way past two Norfolk Collegiate defenders Tuesday during a non-Tidewater Conference match at NSA. The visiting Oaks opened the scoring in the 14th minute and went on to a 5-1 victory.

Norfolk Collegiate scored five goals out of eight shots on goal Tuesday afternoon to cruise past host Nansemond-Suffolk 5-1 in a non-Tidewater Conference match.

It was the final non-conference game before the Saints’ schedule turns mostly to TCIS competition, starting Friday with a visit from Bishop Sullivan Catholic.

NSA had two wins and a draw out of its last four matches going into facing the Oaks, but a flurry of three Oak goals within eight minutes early in the second half decided the match.

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“We were very confident in our last couple games and it showed in our play,” said NSA head coach Art Truesdell.

“Today, we went down a goal and had things go against us and our team has to learn how to react to adversity, how to respond,” Truesdell said.

The Oaks didn’t create a lot of scoring chances throughout the 80 minutes, but they capitalized to hurt the Saints whenever a chance presented itself.

The Oaks scored in the 14th minute helped by slow reactions or miscommunication between NSA goalkeeper Adam Florian and his defender teammates.

The Saints bounced back and played much of the following 15 minutes even. The Oaks had one shot and none on frame between their first goal and making it 2-0 in the 33rd minute. A punt from the Oak goalie bounced a couple times before falling to an Oak forward who fired it into the goal with a strike from 22 yards.

Truesdell said getting to the half one goal down would’ve meant a good chance to turn the match around. NSA had a couple brief attacking chances late in the half and earned two dangerous free kicks near the Oak box early in the second half.

Instead, with goals in the 51st, 54th and 59th minutes, Norfolk Collegiate made the rest of the way academic.

The Saints got on the board in the 61st minute. Preston Firnstahl got to a long, lobbed pass by Jeffrey Ruland and scored with a short right-footed shot in the left side of the Oak box.

“The team is training hard and they enjoy playing with each other. Today just wasn’t a good day,” Truesdell said.

“We have to get tougher. It’s not so much physically tougher as in tackling more, but it’s being mentally tougher, playing harder, being more determined, playing better after getting a bad break,” Truesdell said.

The Saints (2-5-1) face Bishop Sullivan Friday at 4:30 p.m. NSA lost 2-0 at Bishop Sullivan to start its season.