After a hard fought loss in Richmond, Northern Colorado came home to face Central Valley.
GREELEY, Colo. – In one of the last games to be played in Greeley, Northern Colorado Hailstorm FC came in with a bang against Central Valley Fuego FC. After a hard fought game on the weekend the side was ready to defend their home turf.
Fuego attempted to test keeper Thomas Olsen within a few seconds of the game starting with a shot from very long range but it was easily brought in. A few minutes later however Fuego found the opening strike of the game, with another long strike that found its way into the lower corner.
A quarter of an hour on from going behind Lachlan McLean found his way into the goal column for the first time this season. It started with a ball over the top for Trevor Amann. Amann was able to control the ball and round the keeper to open the goal up for a cut back pass to McLean to pass it into the wide open net. “He couldn’t even really see me. But I just trust that he’s got the ability and vision to find me in that area and it was a tap in,” said McLean on Amann’s play.
The Hailstorm came close to finding themselves another Goal of the Week candidate when the hero of the last home game, Nortei Nortey, let one go from distance. The keeper did well to deflect it over the bar but showed that the team was not complacent with the level scores.
A free kick by Fuego called Olsen to make a save. The diving save on the goal line was corralled by Olsen and he sprung Northern Colorado on a counter-attack. After a foul the ref chose to play advantage and Amann slotted one past the keeper, to give the Hailstorm control of the match.
Fresh out of halftime, Northern Colorado didn’t waste time going on the attack, winning a corner that resulted in a goal line save by Ofek Antman. Antman kept his side in the match later in the half just past the hour mark. Stopping three shots in the span of a few minutes that would have put the game out of reach.
It wasn’t much longer and in a flurry of shots the Hailstorm had turned a 2-1 game into a 4-1 game. Coming first from an Irvin Parra goal that almost looked like it was going to be an own goal by Central Valley. Antman was able to slide and keep it out of the goal for the time being but substitute Marky Hernandez was there to collect and find Parra coming into the box to double the lead. Three minutes later Hernandez himself put the game to bed with a one timer that was put back in the box after the initial corner was cleared away. “It’s a big relief, it’s been eight or nine games. I’ve been in and out with injuries which has been my biggest struggle. But now that I got my first goal, it feel great to finally score here in Colorado,” said Hernandez.
“Delighted to that first home win,” said head coach Éamon Zayed. “The positive is, I genuinely, despite the two draws before this game tonight (at home) I thought we were going in the right direction. I kept saying we seem to be a team on the fringes of almost being a great team. We just needed to put chances away and have a performance like that. I’m not surprised I saw the performances coming despite the results.”
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