SOUTHERN PINES — The Richmond Raider soccer team battled wet conditions and a tough Pinecrest squad during Monday’s Sandhills Athletic Conference match.
The Raiders couldn’t overcome a pair of goals in the opening minutes and fell to the Patriots 8-1. It was the second time this season Richmond lost to Pinecrest by that score.
“In the first half we played pretty decently and we moved the ball around pretty well,” head coach Chris Larsen said. “We had a few chances that weren’t toward frame, but we were on the attack and counterattack a few times.
“I think we gave up four soft goals, and after the second or third one, it set the tone,” he continued. “It’s hard to recover when you play a quality team like Pinecrest. The guys gave a good effort and we were able to get everyone some playing time.”
Pinecrest scored in the first 33 seconds on a goal by Nick Fidandis, and added a goal in the 13th minute from Matthew Mueller.
Pinecrest (11-1-1, 6-0-1 SAC) added two more goals in the first half against junior goalkeeper Ethan McDonald. They were scored by Billy Donze (26th minute) and Gerold Ofosu (37th minute).
Senior goalkeeper Ian Williams played the second half in net for Richmond, and allowed a goal to Ofosu in the 45th minute. Extending Pinecrest’s lead to 6-0 as a goal by Connor Morgan in the 49th minute.
A header from Avery Sneed in the 60th minute put the Patriots ahead by seven goals.
Juniors Ty Murray and Jullian Cline would team up for Richmond’s goal in the 74th minute on a set piece, the second time the Raiders have scored a goal on a corner kick against Pinecrest this year.
Murray took the kick from the right corner, sending a low drive to Cline inside the 18-yard box. One-timing his shot, Cline blasted the ball between the keeper and the near post for the goal. Murray was credited with the assist.
“It’s good to see the guys coming off the bench be able to do what we worked on in practice,” Larsen said of the goal. “It was a nice low-driven cross from Ty and JuJu one-timeed it on frame and beat the keeper near post.
“It shows that when we get the chance to put the ball in the back of the net, and we get it toward the goal, we have the ability to get on the scoreboard.”
With just under four minutes left to play, Dylan Stayskal scored the game’s final goal for the Patriots.
“We’re looking forward to Wednesday and hopefully we’ll have fresh legs,” Larsen said. “I’m hoping to regroup and see if we can’t tackle Hoke for a win.”
Richmond (4-10, 2-6 SAC) is still trying to sneak into a 4A playoff spot, and will return to the pitch for another SAC match on Wednesday at Hoke County High School (12-4, 5-3 SAC).
In the first meeting this season, the Bucks defeated Richmond 6-0. Action will get started in Raeford at 7 p.m.
JV Raiders rained out against Pinecrest
Due to the weather, the Richmond junior varsity soccer team did not play Pinecrest on Monday.
The JV Raiders (8-2-1, 2-1-1 SAC) will resume play at Hoke County on Wednesday, beginning at 5 p.m.