MSU-Nomads run out of gas
By By Fredie Carmichael/The Meridian Star
June 25, 2001
The only team with local players left in the State Games soccer medal rounds on Sunday afternoon, was the MSU-Nomads. Pure exhaustion might have been the reason that the Nomads didn't make it to the gold medal game.
The Nomads fought through arguably the toughest pool in the tournament and advanced to the semi-finals where they were one win away from reaching the gold medal game. Waiting in the wings was the Pearl Hooligans.
The Hooligans were fortunate to have fresh legs due to a Sunday morning opponent forfeiting. The Nomads on the other hand, had to play an early game and win a shoot-out with Brilla Clinton to reach the semis.
Brilla and the nomads played to a 0-0 tie on Saturday and had to go head-to-head in the shoot-out because they were both tied with 31 points apiece in pool D. The Nomads won the shoot-out with Brilla and had to turn right around and play the well rested Hooligans.
Despite the lack of rest, the Nomads still managed to get on the board first and take an early 1-0 lead on a goal by John Miller. Miller – known for his trash-talking according to spectators – was able to back his talk up with his play.
Pearl came back and tied it at 1-1 just prior to the halftime whistle and the team of MSU alumnist seemed to be worn out. But once again the Nomads got a big play from Miller. Miller's beautiful curving corner kick was deflected by three players before finally coming to rest at the back of the net. That goal put the Nomads on top 2-1 with 20:04 still to play.
That's when the fatigue factor came into play.
The Hooligans scored on a open netter and almost ended the game in regulation with several good shots on goal. Neither team was able to break the tie, though, before the final whistle sounded. The teams were then forced to play an extra session, consisting of two ten-minute halves, to determine who would play for the gold.
The Nomads were no match for the Hooligans in the extra period as Pearl scored three easy goals and claimed the 5-2 victory.
Pearl's Hooligans went on to win the gold medal with a 2-0 shut-out of a stout Casa Monterey-Tupelo team.
Jackson's Time-out breezed through the over-30 division claiming gold without a blemish with a 4-0 mark.