Season opening victory for NOVA

Season opening victory for NOVA

HERNDON, Va. – A hot and humid afternoon did not slow down the Northern Virginia Community College soccer team as it was a 3-1 winner over NJCAA Region 20 foe CCBC Catonsville Tuesday afternoon.

The Nighthawks begin the season 1-0-0 and are back in action Friday against Union County at Word of Grace starting at 3 p.m.

For much of the first half neither team could start its offense, but following a NOVA defensive breakdown, the Cardinals hit the back of the net first on Eddy Fossung's goal. Fossung's shot beat the out stretched Andres Avila Riano to make it 1-0. 

Just over three minutes later, Christian Fuentes won a 50-50 ball and turned on his jets to tie the game at one. Then with four minutes left in the first half Andrew Bailey grabbed a loose ball and faked out the defender and hammered home the game-winning goal, which made it 2-1.

"Catonsville proved to be very disciplined and hard to break down," said head coach Thomas Connolly. "That caused us to play a bit more direct and over the top than I would have liked. We have that speed to be successful and we proved very dangerous getting in behind and down the wings."

"Overall, I thought we executed well in the second half by minimizing turnovers and we put away our chances when we needed to which is critical."

Catonsville, however, kept firing the ball and Avila Riano made a stop with three minutes left in the opening stanza and again seven minutes into the second half for two of his career-high seven saves on the afternoon.

Later in the contest, Fuentes was going for his second goal of the day with 19 minutes remaining, but his shot hit the post and went out of bounds. NOVA then added its insurance goal nine minutes later when Yazid Ajape put the icing on the cake to give the Nighthawks a 3-1 advantage.