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Chestatee boys rally to beat Riverside
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Sudden momentum shifts aren’t the norm in soccer, but for the Chestatee boys team, that exact thing led to a win.

Down 1-0 with 14 minutes remaining in their game, the War Eagles (5-3, 2-2 Area 7-AAA) scored two goals in 36 seconds to beat Riverside 2-1 on Friday night at Chestatee High.

“The kids are finding out what it takes to stay in, come back in and win games,” said Chestatee coach Michael Herrin of his team, which won its last two games — against West Forsyth and North Hall — by one goal each. “We were down against West Forsyth and came back to tie it and win it in (penalty kicks), and we were even with North Hall and managed to just pull it out.

“The guys are learning that it’s never too late.”

Riverside’s aggressiveness on both sides of the pitch in the first half resulted in an early deficit for Chestatee, and few chances for the War Eagles pull out of it.

The Eagles (4-2, 1-0 Area 15) managed six shots on goal to Chestatee’s one in the first half, while being called for four offsides penalties.

In the 20th minute, the Eagles took the lead when Anderson Price’s cross found Pape Ndiaye, who scored.

“The first half we were able to press,” Riverside coach Diego Vacca said. “We talked at halftime about it being normal for the home team to come back and press back.

“That’s what happened.”

Chestatee gave Riverside a taste of its own medicine early and often in the second half. The War Eagles offense pressured keeper Victor Salcido — who finished the night with four saves — and the defense kept Riverside’s offense at bay.

The Eagles managed only two shots on goal in the second half to Chestatee’s three.

“The first half we got pulled out of shape,” Herrin said. “We had guys bunching up and not running to the ball.

“We talked at halftime about adjusting and how to adjust and the guys did a great job executing.”

Chestatee tied the game at 1 in the 58th minute when Taylor Carr settled a pass and shot from the top of the box, kicking an airborne linedrive that found the back of the net.

David Gijon gave the War Eagles a lead they did not relinquish seconds later when his shot from 20-yards out found its way past Salcido.

“I’m proud of the boys,” Vacca said. “I knew it would be a good game and a good battle and it was that for both teams.”

Riverside returns to action at at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday at St. Francis High School in Alpharetta.

Chestatee next plays host to Lumpkin County on Monday with the girls’ game starting at 5:30 p.m. and the boys at 7:30 p.m.
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