Despite being without two backline starters and with a third battling injury, the New Orleans Jesters still managed a huge point at home with a 1-1 draw against Inter Nashville FC Saturday night at Pan American Stadium. Defender Lucas La Van Way was a gametime decision with his injury but played the full 90 minutes. He said that while the team preferred a win, the draw showed the heart of the team, despite being so short-handed.
Inter Nashville FC got on the board first when Jesters goalkeeper Chad Collins made a punch save, but Liam Collins collected the long rebound and scored in the 16th minute.
But the Jesters would answer 13 minutes later when Mason Walsh delivered a Goal of the Year candidate for New Orleans, beating multiple Nashville defenders on a 50-yard run that ended in a great finish to tie it at 1-1.
Walsh said of the goal, “I was actually looking for Hisham (Kasimu) once I got some space because I know he’s got some legs on him….couldn’t get the pass out so I just carried on going and luckily I was able to tuck it away.”
New Orleans had several near misses on potential game-winners in the second half. Perhaps the best of those was in the 75th minute when the Jesters had a great buildup that led to a close range shot from Tony Judice that he pushed just wide of the goal. New Orleans would have to settle for the 1-1 draw.
Jesters head coach Kenny Farrell he was proud of his team’s short-handed effort.
“They played brilliantly, this is a good Nashville team, don’t get me wrong. I jumped twice because I thought twice it was in the back of the net. It was such beautiful moves and great interchange and passing. I can’t be disappointed with their performance. It comes down to scoring goals. It was just good all around. It’s just a shame that it wasn’t three points.”
The Jesters now play their next three matches on the road, starting at Greenville FC on Wednesday night. The Jesters final home regular season match is July 7 against Asheville City SC.
Contributor: Paul Boron/New Orleans Jesters
Photo Credit James Cage Jr.