SOUTHEAST TEAMS BATTLE AS PLAYOFFS NEA
Nashville FC continues to raise their stock as the playoffs loom and Tuesday night they had to make up their match with Rocket City United in Huntsville.
Nashville had their lead early as Acuna Sanchez scored off the corner in just the third minute, as NFC scored off the early corner. It was the second match in a row that the Nashvillians scored in the first five minutes.
NFC continually pushed for their second goal of the night, but Rocket City dominated possession in the second half. However, twenty minutes from time a nice run of play saw the visitors take the 2-0 lead. Walker Mainwaring was fouled down the left side, but continued the play as the referee rightly played the advantage. Josue Chavez looped a perfectly slated shot over the United keeper and Nashville led 2-0 in the 70th minute. RCU has minimal chances at the other end and Nashville left the Rocket City with the 2-0 win.
The New Orleans Jesters were still bubbling over their 4-1 win on their final home match of 2014. Their Friday trip to Georgia Revolution was not a letdown as the Jesters hit for three in their strong defeat of the Revs.
It took more than an hour to get the scoring started, but when they did the Jesters scored a flurry. Off a corner in the 63; minute, Jordan Hulme headed in the first goal of the night. Ten minutes later, Daniel Gudmunson followed suit with the second goal off a corner. Just for good measure, Reece Wilson put home the trifecta on another corner and New Orleans waltzed away with the 3-0 win in Georgia.
The Revs will finish their 2014 season on July 5th, as they play in state rival, Atlanta Silverbacks Saturday night.
As for the Atlanta Silverbacks Reserves, their task was to better their position as the playoff race continued. They had a key opportunity as they hosted Nashville FC.
The match saw only one goal in it as Mario Oliveira. Atlanta had found Nashville off-guard on the counter. Oliveira got the perfect pass from Mercado and beat Nashville keeper Lunney to net the would be game winner in the 27th minute.
With those three points from the weekend, Nashville enters the last week of the season with 18 points and host the Knoxville Force on the 4th.
The Knoxville Force came into their Friday night match still seeking that first win of 2014 and wanted to erase the 6-1 drubbing from Chattanooga the week before off their minds. Rocket City had defeated Knoxville earlier in the season and had not won a game since.
Although both clubs were out of the playoff race, there was still much to play for. When it looked like the game was going to end with a scoreless draw, Ricky Davey scored for United in the 93rd minute with a strong header off a corner kick to give Rocket City the win in the dying embers of the match.
The last two matches of the weekend on Saturday saw large score lines, as three of the four clubs were playing in consecutive nights.
In a battle for Southeast Conference dominance, Chattanooga defeated the Jesters 3-0. Just 18 minutes into the match CFC scored their first as Sias Reyneke beat the goalie after a nice pass from Thibault Charmey as the home club was pushing for the opener. Less than ten minutes from the opener, Chrispin Ochieng got number two for CFC, as his shot came via a nice assist from John Carrier. Those two goals and a third from Niall McCabe on a penalty twenty minutes from time leads CFC to the top of the table .
Chattanooga host Rocket City United on the 4th to end the regular season.
Finally, the Atlanta Silverbacks finished their road matches in Huntsville, as dominated in a 4-1 romp. In the 17th minute, Christian Vallejos scored from a ball played down the wing and was on the end of a nice cross that but Atlanta up 1-0.
Rocket City answered right after the kick as Jose Tristan collected the equalizer, but that would be all RCU could muster. Kevin Rodriguez stepped around the Rocket City keeper and Atlanta took the 2-1 lead just five minutes from the half.
Palamin Fofana scored the third an hour into the match and 15 minutes from time Jose Esa Nehaua scored Atlanta’s fourth.