CFC Wins 3-0 Over Visiting Napa Valley

Saturday, September 14, 2019 - by Joseph Dycus
Action in front of the Napa Valley box.
Action in front of the Napa Valley box.
- photo by Greg Davick

Corner kicks are, in many ways, similar to the most unlikely of American Football plays. Hail
Mary passes involve heaving a deep pass into traffic, where the attacking side hopes someone
will emerge from the congestion and score. Although these kinds of efforts rarely work, the
Chattanooga Football Club found a way to succeed on such a play in their 3-0 home win over
Napa Valley.

The play began from the left side, where Cameron Woodfin struck a blooping corner kick
toward the near post. The original target of the pass was unclear, and it quickly became
entangled in the green and blue-clad forest. Anxious Chattanooga fans held their breath when
the ball momentarily disappeared from view. None were silent for too long though, because
Genki Miyachi quickly made the crowd of thousands roar with approval when he tapped the
ball in for Chattanooga’s first score.

Overall, it was a spectacular effort for Chattanooga’s most popular soccer team. One week after
1-1 draw at Milwaukee, CFC took the pitch against a team they had previously defeated by six
goals two week prior. Miyachi may have scored the first goal, but the forwards were the
brightest-burning stars on the scorching September evening. As the game carried on, it became
apparent Napa Valley was unable to properly defend Chattanooga’s arsenal of fleet-footed
forwards.

“In both games, we came out really well, as you can see. It was early goals,” said midfielder
Juan Hernandez, “In the first game (against Napa Valley) it was 45 seconds and today it was
under two minutes. So it’s just the mentality that we came in with. We’re feeling good, we
score early, and keep the momentum going with the other stuff.”

Joao Costa doubled the score when he banged in a rare header on one of CFC’s many quick-
strike goals. After a virtuoso one-man run by Alun Webb was disallowed by an offsides call, the
fast-paced forward made up for it a few moments later. Taking advantage of Napa’s high back-
line, Costa maneuvered into the ample amounts of open space near the goal. Webb hurled a
service straight to Costa, where number eight pounded it across the goal and into the net.

The second half was a slower kind of match, and featured a more methodical style of play from
CFC. While Napa Valley did their best to create chances against Chattanooga’s defense, any
attempt made at breaking down CFC’s back line was met with a futility.

Now, despite being a bit more careful, Chattanooga did not completely park the bus in the
second half. They still tried to strike when the opportunity presented itself, but Napa Valley
appeared to play a much lower back four, and constricted the space inside the box.

“I think that some of our forwards are unpredictable and can beat you individually off of the
dribble or they can beat you with their movement off the ball. And that’s certainly the thing that caused them problems in California,” said coach Peter Fuller, “But tonight, I thought they
were much better organized when dealing with it. By playing five in the back, it will do that.”

The match was well on its way to being an easy 2-0 win when Caleb Cole came off the bench
and bulleted in a late-game dagger. Receiving the ball about 15 yards out, Cole began to slide
across the pitch, moving to his left with high pace. When Cole found himself with enough space,
he used his bazooka of a left foot to launch a missile past the keeper and into the twine.

This final score bookmarked a well-played Chattanooga win and their first home victory in
months. CFC is back on the road for next week’s matchup against


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