Lady Hawks rally, top NR
Published 8:28 pm Wednesday, March 23, 2016
The Nansemond River High School girls’ soccer team held the lead for most of Tuesday night against visiting Hickory High School but ended up on the losing end of a 2-1 final score.
“We should have won,” Lady Warriors coach Kurt Straub said. “We got a judgment offsides call, but you’re going to have to keep on playing. You don’t always rely on the offsides.”
During the game, there was deliberation among the officials to determine if the Lady Hawks’ first goal would count. The result of the brief conference between referees was a confirmation that the strike, which came with about 11:33 left in the game, would indeed count.
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“Then we lose somebody backside instead of marking them, and that’s the second goal,” Straub said.
The second goal came with a little more than three and a half minutes to play.
“Besides that, we played with them,” Straub said. “We had our opportunities, we just couldn’t find the back of the net.”
With urgency after the second goal, Nansemond River marched down the field and made a particularly promising attack on Hickory’s goal with about three minutes left on the clock, but the keeper hit the ground and was able to stop the shot.
The Lady Warriors were the first to score in the game, getting on the board about 20 minutes into the first half. The goal came from junior forward Daijah Norris after she had received a pass from sophomore forward Indiah Hunter.
The Lady Hawks are typically one of the strongest teams in the Southeastern District, and there was optimism among Nansemond River’s team about how well it played against them.
“We stepped up more than I thought we would,” NR junior center midfielder Kamarie Jewette said. “Even when we gave up that first goal, we kept fighting, and I really appreciate that we kept fighting. I didn’t know if we could compete with that level, but we did, and I’m proud of us.”
She pointed to defense as what she and her teammates need to make sure is solid moving forward.
“We’ve got to make sure we get back and we hold our marks,” she said. “We can’t stab all over the field anymore. We have to contain and be strong as a defensive unit.”
Stabbing refers to the practice of a player reaching her foot out to quickly jab the ball away from an opposing player.
It can be a useful defensive move but one that Straub said players must be smart about “because the girl takes a long dribble, yeah, that’s the time to stab, but the girl has the ball at her feet, that’s not the time to stab. That’s what we did — the girl had it at her feet, and we stabbed.”
Miscues aside, Straub was pleased with how the Lady Warriors’ defense played, including senior sweeper Kendall Webster, senior left fullback Jen Herrera and sophomore right fullback Kayleigh McQueen.
“They rotated like we’ve been working on,” he said and also praised the play of Jewette, junior Starr Robinson and senior Alina Rivera in the midfield.
With regard to Hickory, Straub said, “We’ll see them again, hopefully. They’re in our region now.”
Nansemond River (2-1) visits Indian River High School on Thursday.