Truckee soccer | Boys use strong second half to topple Vikings
The Truckee boys will host league games against Elko on Friday at 5 p.m. and Spring Creek on Saturday at noon.
TRUCKEE — For the first 40 minutes Tuesday, the Truckee and South Tahoe boys seemed destined for a closely contested finish in both teams’ Division I-A opener.
Then the Wolverines found their groove.
After going to half knotted at 1, Truckee scored three unanswered goals in the second half to run away with a 4-1 victory.
“We wanted to come out and set the tone for the rest of the season,” said Truckee coach Casey Eberhardt, whose squad improved to 3-2-2 overall and 1-0 in league. “South Tahoe is always a tough game, so this is a good starting point coming into league.”
While the Wolverines entered with six games under their belt, the Vikings hit the pitch for the first time this season after losing 16 seniors from last year’s group, said second-year coach Ben Hannah.
“I think we’re relatively new as a unit and we’re just learning to play together. We have plenty of talent out there; it’s just a matter of finding the right combinations,” Hannah said. “We can take away some positives, though. We see now where we need to be.”
The Vikings couldn’t have asked for a better start. Just 10 minutes in, Michal Lis, who moved to the South Shore from Poland over the summer, settled a long free kick and quickly hit a shot into the lower right corner of the goal before Truckee defenders could converge on him.
The Wolverines wasted little time striking back, as six minutes later senior Thomas Arnstein made a run from the midfield deep into Vikings territory, out-racing a defender at his side before burying a low shot past South Tahoe goalie Kade Wallace.
“I think the first 10 minutes we were too riled up and jittery,” Eberhardt said. “Once we settled in, we were able to respond quickly.”
Truckee gained steam as the half wore on, narrowly misfiring on several attempts while beginning to control the possession game.
The second half was all Truckee.
“Truckee did a good job possessing in the middle of the field. We were able to stop their through-balls in the first half, and I thought it was relatively even, but they ended up dominating the second half,” Hannah said.
Senior forward Leo Villa broke the tie three minutes into the second frame. Arnstein set up the goal with a free kick that hit the crossbar and bounced to senior Jordan Fereira, who delivered the assist to the feet of an open Villa in the left side of the box.
Five minutes later, Arnstein recorded his second goal of the game when he gathered a through-ball from Fereira and slipped it past South Tahoe goalie Edwardo Martinez on a one-on-one breakaway.
The hosts added an insurance goal off of a corner kick in the 62nd minute. Senior David Martinez arced the ball into a group of players directly in front of the goal.
Truckee senior defender Nick Oberriter got his head on the ball, which bounced off the turf and over the outstretched reach of Martinez.
Eberhardt said he was pleased with the performance of his team, particularly Arnstein, and Fereira, Martinez and Zack Barta in the midfield.
“All in all it was a great game,” he said.
Despite the final score, Hannah said he was impressed with his team’s defensive effort, including the play of Jack Kixmiller and Diego Garcia, as well as Chris Medina in the second half.