Da Chutes shut out Santa Fe in soccer duel

Players from Da Chutes and Santa Fe battle for header during a Summer Soccer League game.

Story and photo by Randy Dela Cruz

Sports Editor, Ho‘okele

Playing solid defense throughout the game, the Da Chutes from Air Mobility Command turned up their offense in the second half and scored two goals to get past USS Santa Fe (SSN 763), 2-0, June 23 in a Summer Soccer League showdown at Earhart Field, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

“In the first half, we were just conserving – let them waste their energy,” said Da Chutes Staff Sgt. Nick Peapea.

“In the second half, we turned it up. We were trying to be more aggressive toward the ball, so we were able to develop and get quick plays going.”

Midway through the first half, it appeared as though Santa Fe got on the scoreboard first, but the officials overturned the goal to keep the game tied at 0-0.

The deadlock stood all the way to halftime, but shortly into the second half, it looked like Da Chutes took a 1-0 lead on a quick kick into the goal.

However, once again, officials had a different view of the goal and overturned their second score of the game to keep the teams tied at 0-0.

Finally, about midway through the second half, Peapea came through and scored a goal that both referees agreed upon for a 1-0 lead.

Peapea said that he could see the play develop before him, but in the end, had to hustle to catch up with a loose ball, before tucking it into the goal.

“Pretty much, we were running down the line on a standard play,” Peapea said about how Da Chutes broke the ice.

“We happened to pass the center line and I thought the ball was going out. But I just sprinted my butt off, saw the opportunity and squeezed (the ball) in there in the lower corner.”

As the game was nearing its close, Da Chutes got one more score to put the game away for good.

The play happened on a perfectly executed corner kick that completely took Santa Fe off-guard.

At the end of the game, many of the Da Chute players stated that the win was a testament to their teamwork and was great way to bounce back after suffering their first loss of the season in the league opener.

In the win over Santa Fe, Da Chute regrouped to take advantage of Santa Fe’s mistakes and used its speed to track down most of the 50-50 balls.

In addition, the team’s combined effort on defense was lights out, as it took control of the mid-field and kept Santa Fe away from the goal.

Overall, the team’s excellent effort against Santa Fe was visible proof that the team should be able to more than hold its own against the rest of the league.

Although the game is only the second of the season, Peapea said that he can see that the team has potential to finish the season high in the league’s standings.

“From what I see, the team has great potential,” Peapea said.

The league will now take a break for the Rim of the Pacific exercise, but will resume play as soon as the exercises are over.

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Category: Sports