No. 6 Nevada earns 2-0 victory over No. 11 Comets
ALLEMAN – The Nevada boys’ soccer team showed it’s still the team to beat in the Heart of Iowa Conference Monday as the No. 6 Cubs blanked No. 11 North Polk, 2-0, in a battle between two Class 1A powers in Alleman.
Playing in rainy and windy conditions, the game got a little sloppy at times. But Nevada dominated ball possession most of the night – totaling 18 shots on goal – which enabled the Cubs to break through against North Polk’s tough defense once each half.
“North Polk is a pretty solid team,” Nevada head coach Bill George said. “I don’t think we played our best soccer. But this was a big win this early (in the season). We’re finding a way to win, and that’s what’s important.”
Tanner Hanson stepped up from midfield to score the game’s first goal.
Nearly 19 minutes into the first half, Hanson followed up a Cub attack and received a nice ball from Austin See. Hanson fired off a shot from 25 yards out, and before North Polk keeper Garrett Ley could react, the ball rocketed into the back of the net to give Hanson his first goal of the season and put the Cubs on top.
“Austin stopped the ball and I called for it,” Hanson said. “He crossed it and I kicked it in.”
The score remained 1-0 until midway through the second half.
During the 61st minute, leading Nevada scorer Tate Handsaker found the back off the net off a feed from Patrick Stephenson for his sixth goal of the season. That score broke the Comets’ backs as the Cubs kept controlling things the rest of the way, improve to 4-1 on the season.
“It feels great,” Hanson said. “Especially since they’re in our conference.”
Hanson credited keeper Zach Anderson and the Nevada defensive back four of sweeper Owen Shawgo, charger Will Griffin and fullbacks John and Chad Jamison for playing a huge part in the victory. In addition to posting a shutout, Nevada only allowed five shots on goal.
Ley had 14 saves for North Polk in a losing effort. The setback put the Comets at 3-2 on the season.
Nevada 2, NP 0
N 1 1 - 2
NP 0 0 - 0
N - Tanner Hanson (Austin See), 18:59
N - Tate Handsaker (Patrick Stephenson), 61:33.
WAVERLY – A big game from Tate Handsaker and a strong second half helped Nevada take down Waverly-Shell Rock by a 3-1 score Saturday in Waverly.
The Cubs fell behind 1-0 19 minutes into the game after Waverly-Shell Rock’s Tanner Hanks scored off a feed from Isaiah Mundell. Hanks’ score was a quick blow to Nevada after a hot start that included two shots on goal in the first few minutes of play, but it didn’t take long for the Cubs to regain the momentum.
During the 26th minute, Handsaker scored off a Johordan Ritter free kick to knot the score at 1-1. It remained tied at the half, but five minutes into the second half, Nevada went ahead to stay on a Handsaker penalty kick.
Handsaker completed a hat-trick when he converted a goal following a long punt by keeper Zach Anderson. That goal took the wind out of Waverly-Shell Rock’s sails as Nevada cruised to 3-1 on the season.
“We had several good looks at the goal today,” Nevada head coach Bill George said. “Overall, I was pleased with our performance. We were controlling the ball and creating good looks at goal. On the defensive end, I thought it was our best performance on the year.”
Anderson and Ritter both finished with an assist. Anderson also made five saves and Nevada had 10 shots on goal.
Waverly-Shell Rock fell to 4-2 with the loss. Keeper Alex Denton made two saves and the Go-Hawks had seven shots on goal.