Ontario Fury Record Comeback Win Versus Turlock Express
A second-half surge by Ontario Fury led the hosts past Turlock Express on Thursday night. The Fury recorded their second consecutive win as they head on the road to face off against the Sockers in San Diego on Saturday night.
MASL Soccer New: Ontario Fury recorded a 6-2 comeback victory against Turlock Express on Thursday night at Citizens Business Bank Arena. The hosts were led by five different goalscorers to record their sixth win of the 2018/19 Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) campaign.
Despite falling behind 2-0 in the first half, Ontario was able to rally in the second half. Ontario captain Jeff Hughes highlighted the squad’s composure during the match.
“Chris [Toth] said it best after we gave up the second goal,” said Hughes. “Not to panic. There wasn’t this onset that we aren’t going to score. We had our chances. We stayed disciplined and stuck to what makes us successful.”
In the first quarter, Ontario had two opportunities to open the scoring but saves by Turlock goalkeeper Martin Sanchez kept the match level. A chance for Turlock came minutes later when Ontario goalkeeper Chris Toth was drawn out of the net to close in on the attacker. The ball was played across the top of the penalty box with an open net, but the visitors were unable to finish.
With 3:48 left in the first quarter, Turlock midfielder Matthew Germain scored the opener. Carlos Manzo served the ball on the ground to Germain who came sliding in and got a slight touch on the ball to beat Toth.
Martyn Arista extended Turlock’s lead to 2-0 with 2:12 left to play in the first quarter. Germain collected the ball at midfield and played Arista who was streaking down the right sideline unmarked. Arista cut the first defender to his left, rolled the ball to catch the second off balance and then calmly struck the ball on the ground into the back of the net.
Although Ontario collected the ball multiple times in front of goal, Sanchez held the clean sheet heading into halftime. The Fury frontmen set up their teammates for finishing strikes or turned defenders on their own, but Sanchez came up time and time again for the visiting club.
Ontario scored its opening goal of the match in the third quarter off an individual effort from Dallin Cutler. The midfielder controlled a rebound in front of goal, dribbled towards the left corner of the penalty box and hit a ball to the far, bottom corner.
Juan Carlos Gonzalez brought the match level with 1:56 left of the third quarter. Ontario forward Tino Nunez collected the ball with his back to goal and laid the ball off to an incoming Gonzalez who finished with authority for the equalizer.
Ontario took the lead with 10:52 left of the final quarter when De Bray Hollimon hit a long-range strike into the upper corner.
Ontario claimed a 4-2 advantage from the penalty spot with 5:08 left to play. After being taken down in the penalty area, Maicon De Abreu calmly finished for the hosts. 36 seconds later, De Abreu dispossessed Turlock by sending a one-time pass forward to Gonzalez who turned his defender and finished with authority to take control of the match.
The final tally of the match for Ontario was recorded by Toth after Turlock brought in a sixth attacker. Following an easy save to the chest, Toth recognized the empty net and hurled the ball down the pitch and into the goal.
Ontario head on the road to take on the San Diego Sockers on Saturday, January 5th, at Pechanga Arena San Diego at 7:05 p.m. PT.
Ontario is prepared for another intense meeting after falling to the Sockers, 4-2, in their first matchup of the season. The night will be a reunion for Hughes, Toth as well as Evan McNeeley. The former Sockers players will enjoy the return to San Diego, but the focus will be on continuing their strong form during the 2018/19 campaign.
“We focus weekly on each match,” said Hughes. “I preach to these guys to take it game by game. Now we can focus on the Sockers. It is going to be great to go home and play in front of the Sockers fans and players that I coached. But it’s going to be another game and another opportunity for this team to get better. For this team to prove how competitive we can be in this league.”
“The last game was very competitive,” said Hughes. “I expect it to be the same. This game can sometimes be unpredictable. For me, it’s a great opportunity to play against a competitive team and evaluate how much better we are since the first time we played.”
Photo Credit: Chris Rael