PARKERSBURG - It has been a while since Parkersburg South soccer fans have had an opportunity to cheer when their Patriots score a goal. It finally happened again Wednesday night at the Erickson All-Sports Facility when Italian foreign exchange student Federico Pace put the ball in the back of the net with 6:51 remaining in Parkersburg South's matchup with Ohio River rival Marietta.
The score, which was assisted by Isaac Boles, allowed the hosts to forge a 1-1 tie as Marietta's Colin Jordan had given the visitors a one goal lead five minutes earlier.
"I thought we played well," Parkersburg South head coach Ed Ayers said. "We moved the ball better. Playing two days in a row is pretty difficult especially when one is your biggest rival (PHS) and the other (Marietta) is also a rival."
Photo by Jeff Baughan
Parkersburg South's Charlie Kittle kicks the ball away from Marietta's Grant Gandor during their match Wednesday. South and Marietta played to a 1-1 tie.
The tie evens the Patriots' mark at 7-7-3 with a road game slated at Winfield on Monday while Marietta, which plays host to River on Saturday night, saw its record to to 8-2-2 on the season.
"It's frustrating whenever you have a lead," Marietta head coach Todd Morris said. "It's especially frustrating when you lose it late in the game."
Both teams had their chances during the first 40 minutes of action, but Parkersburg South keeper Lincoln Morgan and Tigers' keeper Eric Pierce proved to be up to the challenge as each time a shot came near the net, they were quick to knock it away or scoop it up.
Parkersburg South boys 1, Marietta 1
MHS (8-2-2) 0 1-1
PSHS (7-7-3) 0 1-1
MHS: Colin Jordan (unassisted) 11:16 2nd
PS: Federico Pace (assist Isaac Boles) 6:51 2nd
Shots on goal: PS 12, MHS 8
Corner kicks: PS 4, MHS 2
Keeper saves: PS (Lincoln Morgan 5, MHS (Eric Pierce) 2
JV score: Marietta 2, Parkersburg South 0; Marietta JV goals: Ryan Teer, Collyn Schaad
Next matches: Parkersburg South plays at Winfield at 6 p.m. on Monday; River plays at Marietta on Saturday.
"We thought we had one in the first half, but the side official said it did not cross the line," said Ayers. "That would have been huge because it would have allowed us to use a different strategy in the second half."
The shot did not count, however, as both teams opened the second 40 minutes tied at 0-0. A score that appeared to be the final score until the last 12 minutes of action.
Marietta struck first when Jordan took a long pass from Brent Huck, raced past a couple of would be defenders and drilled the ball past the Patriots' keeper with 11:16 left in the match.
"I received the ball from (Brent) Huck at midfield," said Jordan. "I saw the field for what it was and went for it. I guess you could say that I got lucky."
Now trailing, 1-0, and looking at its fourth straight shutout loss-the last time the Patriots scored a goal was in a 6-1 loss to University in an OVAC game-Parkersburg South's Boles slipped the ball into Pace about 25 yards in front of the Marietta goal.
The first year Patriot, who hails from the little town of Rimini (close to Venice), took the pass from Boles, spun away from two would be defenders and launched the ball past the Tigers' keeper with 6:51 left in the game.
"First, I must say a big thank you to my teammate, Isaac," said Pace. "He gave the ball to me and I could see the goal. I turned myself away from the defense and took the shot. I am really excited to score my first goal for the team."
Try as they may, the Tigers went on the offensive over the final five minutes. But, each time it appeared that Marietta would score the winning goal, the Patriots' Morgan would come up with the big save.