After nearly 40 minutes, Fallon’s defense conceded.
A late first half goal and an early second half score lifted the South Tahoe boys soccer team past Fallon, 2-1, on Thursday at the Edward Arciniega Complex.
With the win, South Tahoe (4-0-1, 12 points) leapfrogs Truckee for first place in the Northern Division I-A. Fallon (3-2-1, 10) falls into third place.
“Coming out on the thick grass was a little bit heavy for us, and we had to make some adjustments,” Vikings coach Ben Hannah said.
The Greenwave’s strategy was simple — condense the middle, force deep shots and answer with a counter attack. For the first 39 minutes, the Vikings could not crack the defense or goalkeeper Brandon Holler.
South Tahoe coach Ben Hannah’s frustration with the shot selection was transparent. At one point, the coach yelled to his club, “We’ve taken six shots from 30 yards, how many have gone in?” To that point, zero.
“They gave us a good fight. They clogged up the middle really well,” Hannah added. “We didn’t adjust to it as well as should’ve on the flanks.”
The Vikings, though, finally adjusted to Fallon’s scheme and started stretching the Wave’s defense. Once the defense was spread thin, the Vikings pounced.
South Tahoe’s Derrek Caro took a pass from about 25 yards out, quickly turned and rifle a low shot past Holler into the net for a 1-0 lead.
“The truth is, I felt the first went as expected it to go, except for that stoppage time goal,” Fallon coach Nate Waite said. “Obviously I don’t want to lose, but I’m happy with how we played.”
After the break, Caro was at it again serving up a cross off a corner kick that found the boot of Austin Williams, who volleyed the ball into an open net.
The Wave, though, started strong in the second half and created several scoring chances. The first came off a free kick by Corbin Waite, who lobbed the ball from 40 yards out to the top right corner of the net, but South Tahoe goalkeeper Kyle Hannah jumped to make the save.
Minutes later, Waite found Fidel Enriquez, who’s shot just missed wide left.
With 15 minutes remaining, Fallon broke through. Tristan Parrott threaded a beautiful pass between two Vikings defenders just ahead of Enriquez. Enriquez one-touched the ball past a sliding Hannah into the goal to cut the lead to 2-1.
“Tristan just threaded that needle to the opposite post,” Waite said. “Those two just worked real hard.”
Lady Wave stumble at South Tahoe
On the girls pitch, it was a battle for first place with the Vikings coming out on top, 3-1. Maddie Alegre scored for the Lady Wave on an assist from Becca Mills.
With the win, South Tahoe (5-0-1, 16) jumps past Fallon (5-1-0, 15) for first place.
Both clubs are back in action Tuesday against Sparks. The boys host the Railroaders at 4 p.m. at the Edward Arciniega Complex, while the Lady Wave travel to Sparks for a 4 p.m. kickoff.