Sherando exacts revenge with 2-0 win over Colonels

April 27, 2012

Special to The WInchester Star

WINCHESTER — When Sherando’s and James Wood’s boys’ soccer teams get together it’s always an emotional and hard-fought struggle.

Add a share of first place in the Northwestern District race and the fact that the Colonels beat the Warriors earlier in the season 2-1 and the sparks are sure to fly.

The Warriors, despite inspired play by the Colonels, were able to take advantage of a lucky bounce on a free kick and precision passing near the goal to upend Wood 2-0 Thursday evening and take sole possession of first.

“I was really pleased with the win, particularly since they beat us the last time we played,“ Sherando coach Pat Anderson said. “It shows that we’re getting better as the season progresses. We really try not to pay too much attention to the standings, but it’s nice to win since it’s James Wood.”

Even though it was a close game from start to finish, Sherando was able to take advantage of a free kick less than three minutes into the game to take an early lead. Warrior junior Cade Petty sailed a free kick from 20 yards out into a crowded Colonel box and it bounced off one of Wood’s players into the net for the first goal of the game.

“I was trying to get the ball to Taylor Ruths at the near post,” Petty said. “I missed him, but it just happened to go off one of their defenders just inside the near post. That was a great way to begin the game. It gave us a big momentum boost.”

Undeterred, the Colonels fought desperately throughout the first half to get the equalizer but both defenses dominated play over the first 40 minutes and Petty’s shot was the only goal during the first half.

That didn’t mean there weren’t some near misses, though, and with 12:15 left in the half, a header off a throw in by Colonel fullback Mel Savarese bounced off the Warrior crossbar.

Wood had another opportunity with less than three minutes to play in the half when Spencer Marfing took a shot from near point-blank range only to watch helplessly as Sherando goalkeeper Rodrigo Casteriana made a spectacular save.

With the Warriors holding a 1-0 lead heading into the second half, the first 10 minutes of play featured several more near misses by both teams. But as the game progressed Sherando slowly began to control play.

After Wood outshot the Warriors 8-5 in the first half, Sherando was able to reverse that trend in the second half.

With 28 minutes to play in the game, the Warriors were finally able to take advantage of their control of midfield in the second half, but it took two perfect passes in traffic to do it.

“We were trying to play a little bit quicker in the second half,” Anderson said. “We wanted our guys to go meet the ball, and not wait for it to come to them. We also wanted to get our passes off faster, and make the ball work more than our legs.”

Sherando left wing Brain Ferraro drove the ball deep into Wood’s end of the field on the left side, but the Colonel defense left him almost no opening for a pass or a shot.

Threading the ball across the front of the Wood goal, Ferraro was able to find teammate Taylor Ruths about five yards out.

“Once I got past their two defenders I tried to find a man to pass it to,” Ferraro said. “We work on playing the base line like that in practice, and I just did what I’ve been taught to do.”

Ferraro got the ball to Ruths, but he was covered tightly by the Wood defense.

“After Brian flipped me the ball, I saw Tommy (Buono) racing towards the back post,” Ruths said. “I just gave it to the man who had the better shot.”

As the Wood defense collapsed around him, Ruths tapped the ball to his right and Buono volleyed it into the Colonel net from two yards out.

“I just made my run, and Taylor put the ball right at my foot,” Buono said. “I just one-touched it into the net. It feels really good to beat them on their own field. They beat us at our place, and we really wanted to even things out here.”

Buono’s goal seemed to inspire Sherando to push hard for a third goal. Wood tried to respond, but after repeated attempts in the final 10 minutes of play, was unable to score.

“We plan to come back to practice, patch things up, and keep moving forward,” Colonel coach Chris Hild said.


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