Match Recap: Early Deficit Proves Too Much to Handle, MOBA Fall to Nashville 6-1
Nobody ever said it was going to be easy. Coming off a strong start in the pre-season, MOBA had high hopes going into to Nashville for the season opener. Nashville, however, had other plans. Coming off their own strong pre-season (be it only one game), Nashville SC U23 saw at their feet an opportunity to come into the league running, and they did just that.
Immediately following the opening whistle, Nashville pressed hard. Forcing MOBA into an early foul, the U23's capitalized on their first opportunity of the match, as Martim Galvao put the home side up 1-0 with a free kick goal in the third minute that keeper Nick Nelson had no chance to save. Down a goal for the second straight game, MOBA wanted to turn around and reverse the momentum. They did that, briefly, getting two close shots that had a chance to go in, but in the end found only the end line. Twenty-five minutes later, Nashville found themselves another chance, and somehow took advantage of it. After a shot pinballed around the box for a few seconds, it somehow found its way to the feet of SC player Blake Wilson, who put his toe to it and pushed it across the line, putting Nashvile up 2-0. Things were looking bleak for Peachtree City, and it only proceeded to get worse. Just a minute later, Nashville crossed the ball into the box again, and this time it found the head of Galvao, who placed it just below the crossbar and in, and MOBA was now down 3-0. Just before the half, Logan Paynter put his name in the book, as he put Nashville up 4-0 in the forty-third minute. The halftime whistle blew, and MOBA had their work cut out for them.
As the second half began, Peachtree City seemed to be getting the pressure going early, as a quick chance went just high and out for a corner. The ensuing corner was of little note, and play went back into Nashville's favor, as they got on the counter quickly. In the forty-seventh minute, Ivan Alvarado made MOBA pay for failing to clear the ball, rifling a shot past Nelson and increasing the lead to five (think before you tweet, kids). Despite all the negative effort, MOBA kept up the pressure, and it would eventually pay off. After a shot deflected off the keeper and back into the box, MOBA midfielder Matthew Wooling swept in and scored on the empty net, cutting the deficit to four with forty minutes remaining. A lot of back and forth occurred during the following half hour, with both teams getting a number of chances, but none of them would go, as Nick Nelson and William Pyle stopped every shot that came their way. In the eighty-first minute, however, the final dagger went into the MOBA hearts, as Shak Adams scored off a run that proved too much for the MOBA defense, sealing the three points for Nashville.
Despite a lackluster, tired-looking performance from Peachtree City, there is one good thing that the team can take away from Saturday's loss: the season is long. No one game is going to define a season, however MOBA will have to put in the work during the week and get back into winning form if they hope to steal three points in Statesboro on Thursday from a Tormenta team who tied with Myrtle Beach Mutiny 1-1 at home Saturday. Following that match, MOBA heads home for the first time in 2017 to take on Mississippi Brilla FC on Saturday, May 20th. Tickets are still on sale at MOBASoccer.com/tickets.