Adams’ goal helps Sherando tie Heritage
STEPHENS CITY — Time was running out, but Andrew Wade had one last corner kick.
The Sherando senior made the most of it as he lofted a perfect ball to teammate Jake Adams, who headed in a game-tying goal in the final minutes of overtime. The goal gave the Warriors a 5-5 tie with Heritage on Thursday night in non-district boys soccer action.
“I had just served a ball in to one of my teammates and it got blocked out, but we got another chance at it,” Wade said. “I practice that a lot. A near post ball where someone’s coming on and trying to divert it toward the goal and that’s what Jake was able to do there. I just curled the ball in and he really attacked it.”
The Warriors (4-1-1) trailed 5-4 after a goal by Heritage’s Jonathan Martinez, who headed in the ball off a corner kick as well with four minutes left in the second of the two five-minute overtime periods.
After Sherando failed on the first corner kick, Wade and Adams made sure the next one would get through to tie the game with two minutes left in the second overtime.
“Andrew kept playing [the corner kicks] in the front post,” Adams said. “I just knew that we had to keep attacking, and we had to keep staying aggressive in those last couple minutes. I was there in the right spot and persistence paid off.”
The game went back and forth throughout. Heritage (2-1-2) scored in the first two minutes, but Wade, who finished with a goal and two assists, tied the game at 1-1 just 10 minutes in.
With around 12 minutes left in the first half, Heritage’s Nick Scola scored from about 20 yards out to give the Pride a 2-1 lead.
The Warriors came out strong in the second half as Travis Ferraro tied the game just five minutes into the half. However, Heritage answered with a goal of its own less than a minute later.
“We played the way we wanted to,” Sherando coach Pat Anderson said. “We scored. Then we just had that mental lapse. … Offensively, we were pretty sharp. Defensively, we’ve got to get much better — just too many soft goals. Just little miss-kicks and mishaps here and there.”
The Warriors responded as Tanner Wernecke scored with about 27 minutes left in regulation to once again tie the game.
Sherando took the lead for the first time, four minutes later, as Sean Buono scored from about 20 yards out.
“I think we showed we have some quality players, but we also fight harder than any team I’ve ever played for,” Wade said. “I think that just shows a lot about our coaching, as well as just desire of the kids that make the team.”
The Warriors appeared to be in control and ready to pull out a win in regulation, until the final seconds. Sherando goalkeeper Kevin Riley made a nice save in the closing seconds as Heritage was scrambling hard to score.
As the final seconds wound down, the ball was free amid a flurry of activity and Heritage’s Jonathan Stroud was able to get to it and slipped it into the goal to send it to overtime just as the referee’s were ready to blow the whistle to end the contest.
“When they’re pressing at the end, you’ve got to play the smart way. We didn’t play smart at times,” Anderson said. “If we just clear that one ball and we’re in great shape and that’s the difference for us right there. It was there — we just let it go. Again, we have to learn from it and move on.”
Sherando has 11 seniors, including seven that start, and having an experienced group could be huge for the team as the season moves on.
Adams said he feels good about the team this season.
“We’re strong in pretty much all areas,” Adams said. “I think we’re the type of team that if start playing well late in the season we can do good things.”
Contact staff writer Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 168, or email@example.com