Fallon boys soccer beats Galena
Appeal News Service
RENO – Creating history doesn’t usually come easy in high school athletics.
For the first time in Nate Waite’s seven-year coaching career, the Greenwave boys’ soccer team defeated one of Northern Nevada’s elite soccer programs. But even sweeter for the coach and his players is they ended a season-long, seven-game winless streak that included three straight ties followed by four straight losses.
“It’s been forever, but it’s about time,” Waite said about Fallon’s 1-0 win over Galena Wednesday afternoon. “Never has a Fallon team beat Galena as far as I know. To shut them out on their home field is a big deal.”
The win broke a fifth-place tie in the High Desert League with Fallon improving to 2-4-4 overall and Galena dropping to 1-6-3. Both teams tied earlier in the year in Fallon.
“I thought that was a good game and both teams played well,” Galena coach Marco Merlo said. “They put out high-effort kids on the field. I give all the credit to them. They played hard today. Nate keeps them organized.”
With two games left in the season, Fallon still has a shot for the postseason. The Greenwave must defeat Reed on Saturday and Spanish Springs on Monday.
Waite said Wednesday’s physicality of the match should continue for the rest of the season.
“It’s always very physical here,” Waite said about Galena. “They play aggressive. They are smart about technical fouling.”
The major problem that resulted in Fallon’s winless streak was a lack of offense.
Fallon scored late in the first half after a Galena foul and survived multiple threats in the second half. Goalkeeper Angel Muniz and Tyler Sugg helped prevent the Grizzlies from tying the game.
“Angel was very solid,” Waite said. “It was a solid effort all the way around.”
A penalty set up Fallon’s goal when Steve Angus was fouled. Alfredo Gonzales snuck in the goal from the goalkeeper’s box.
“We deserved that win and it was nice to get it,” Waite said.
Merlo said without their top three scorers from last season who combined for 30 goals, Galena cannot afford simple mistakes. The three scorers were ineligible for this season.
“Today, mistakes cost us,” he said. “We can’t replace goals if you can’t score goals.”
Galena hosts Bishop Manogue on Saturday at 1 p.m. for the Grizzlies’ final home game of the season. Galena travels to McQueen on Monday to wrap up the season.