10/14/10 — Eastern Wayne drops C.B. Aycock soccer

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Eastern Wayne drops C.B. Aycock soccer

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on October 14, 2010 1:46 PM

PIKEVILLE -- Eastern Wayne redeemed itself on the soccer pitch and claimed a long-awaited, gratifying victory Wednesday evening.

Kyle Sasser converted the game-deciding penalty kick in the 58th minute and the Warriors upended archrival Charles B. Aycock 1-0 at Hardy Talton Stadium. The shutout decision ended the Golden Falcons 33-game win streak against county opposition since 2006.

The Warriors halted a 12-game skid in the series.

That 5-0 loss to Southern Wayne just two days ago turned into a distant memory as Eastern Wayne players hugged near midfield once the final whistle blew.

"We came out here with heart tonight and the seniors were really pumped because it was our last shot to beat Aycock," said Warriors co-captain Nick Bowden. "We wanted to be aggressive as we could, retain our focus and play the game that we're used to playing."

The same ghost haunted Aycock.

The Golden Falcons agonized over near misses, including Travis Musselman's free kick that curved toward the goal but sailed wide of the near post in the 77th minute. It Aycock's second shutout loss in Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference play and fourth overall of the season.

Each team had 12 shots on goal.

"We've had trouble all year putting the ball away," said Golden Falcons head coach Kevin Adkins. "We don't have a leading striker and it's hard to win ballgames when you don't have a striker. We're just unlucky and just not able to finish."

Eastern Wayne (5-7-0 overall, 5-4-0 ECC) controlled the tempo throughout the opening half. The Warriors kept possession, captured nearly ever 50-50 ball and constantly intercepted Golden Falcon passes in open spaces.

Bowden, a sweeper, and his backline mates -- Benito Avila, Tyler Muehlenthaler and Preston Daly -- cleared numerous long balls. The quartet defended well against Aycock's Chase Thompson, Michael Fearney and Tyler Lynch. Lynch had the trio's lone shot on goal that was blocked just inside the 6-yard box.

"I thought they would be very hungry and the played very well," said Adkins.

Aycock (12-5-1, 6-3-1) applied pressure early in the second half, but never forced Eastern Wayne keeper Jordan Furgeson to make a play on the ball. Furgeson finished with two saves in just the Warriors' second shutout of the year.

As the seconds ticked away and play became a little chippy, the Warriors caught a break inside the 6-yard box. A loose ball ping-ponged between two Golden Falcon defenders and the midfield referee awarded a penalty kick.

Kyle Sasser placed the ball, heard the whistle and fired. Aycock keeper Brandon Davis (six saves) dove to the left as the ball sailed above his head, and into the upper right corner of the net.

"I already had my corner picked out, knew where I was going to put it," said Sasser, who will celebrate his 17th birthday today. "I just hoped it went in. That brought a lot of momentum into the game (for us) and we just had to hold it, maybe put a couple of more in which would have been nice.

"But one was enough."