It is time for a gut check.
After three consecutive losses, the Fallon boys soccer team must dig deep in hopes of reaching its playoff goal.
The gut-check begins today with as the Greenwave visit Elko and on Saturday at Spring Creek and another showdown with powerhouse Sparks on Monday.
“We have got to have more confidence in ourselves,” Fallon coach Nate Waite said. “I think that’s the direction we want to push. I’m not disappointed with our play.”
With the loss, Fallon (6-4-1, 19 points) falls into third place in the Northern Division I-A. Nipping at the Wave’s heels, though, are Spring Creek (5-3-2, 17), South Tahoe (5-4-1, 16) and Elko (5-4-1, 16).
Positive results — wins or at least a tie — are a must today and Saturday if Fallon is to remain in contention for a playoff berth.
The good news, though, is Sparks also visits Elko and Spring Creek this weekend giving Fallon an opportunity to distance themselves from its eastern rivals.
After the Sparks match on Monday, Fallon caps the season with a nonleague game against North Tahoe on Tuesday and two league matches against Dayton (0-11) and Fernley (1-7-2).
“We do need positive results, but at the same time we have a cushion,” Waite said. “We have played all these tough teams and now Elko and Spring Creek will have to play them. We got to focus on us … and if we do that we’ll be fine.”
One issue, though, has been the lack of focus in the past three matches. Waite said when his club is mentally prepared they can play with anybody.
However, the breakdowns have been costly. A stretch of two minutes against South Tahoe led to a pair of goals, another two-minute period against Truckee turned into three goals and a 20-minute hiatus resulted in a 4-0 loss to Sparks.
Waite said his players must discover how to turn on the intensity and focus if a deep playoff run is to be attained.
“It’s a confidence thing,” Waite said. “I believe it’s possible that we go in with that ghost of doubt and it controls us. Finally, we get to where we can stop and go hey, we can play with these guys. It’s something personal for each kid and each kid will have a different answer.”
Fallon fell victim to Sparks on Tuesday in a 4-0 rout. The Wave came out lethargic and uninspired, which a team cannot do against one of the state’s best clubs.
Sparks took advantage as the Railroaders blitzed the Wave with four goals in the first 23 minutes to take the Northern Division I-A match.
The avalanche of goals started when Genaro Vazquez sliced through two Fallon defenders along the goalline and buried a shot past goalkeeper Miguel Perez.
Alexis Medina then blasted a 30-yard shot, a liner that slid under the crossbar leaving Perez with no chance for a save.
Vazquez tallied his second goal in the 20th minute on a header on a cross by Oscar Gomez, who then fed Jesus Partida for the fourth goal three minutes later.
“When you’re timid, you let things come to you instead of going to things … and they control the match,” Waite said.
For the next 57 minutes, though, Fallon played even but the result was already cemented.
The Wave did manage a pair of scoring chances, the first coming when Corbin Waite slid a pass to Tristan Parrott, whose shot sailed just over the crossbar in the 42nd minute.
In the 67th minute, Austin Bischoff took a pass, turned and blasted a shot but it fluttered wide.
Lady Wave shut out
The Fallon girls soccer team was held scoreless in a 4-0 loss at Sparks on Tuesday.
The Lady Wave host Elko today and Spring Creek on Saturday.