Coming off a tough loss Friday night, Erie returned to action less than 48 hours later hoping the loss from Friday was gone from their minds as they looked to continue their winning ways Sunday afternoon. Coming into Sunday’s match, Rochester was coming off a loss handed to them from FC Buffalo on June 22nd.
Erie knowing that if Rochester wanted to keep their playoff hopes alive, they would need to come out and play, but Erie wasn’t happy with just letting them have the ball like they tend to do for the first minutes of the match. Erie came out today pressing the Lancers and forcing them to play at their pace. The Commodores created many chances in the first half, but it proved to be difficult with all the traffic Rochester had in front of their net. Erie continued their dominance in the half with most of the possession and creating seven shots on target.
All the hard work that Erie had in the first half wasn’t for nothing as in the 42nd minute Erie’s Kwame Opoku sent a cross into the front post were Fernando Martinez was waiting as he headed the ball into the far post to open up Erie’s scoring and making it 1-0 just before the stroke of halftime.
The second half would prove to be a similar affair to the first half with Erie finding themselves with the ball most of the time. They kept Rochester chasing the ball for a majority of the half. Neither clubs would create many opportunities on goal as Erie only had three attempts at the frame that were not big opportunities that made the Lancers keeper work much. Erie tried to bring on fresh legs that would hopefully provide another goal to keep the match at bay and comfortably in Erie’s control. The Commodores thought that they could see the match out as they still continued with the ball, making Rochester chase.
Five minutes of stoppage time would be tacked on the end of the half due to eight subs and left Rochester time to see if they could sneak a point off of the home side. In the 94th minute Rochester had their breakthrough. Off a counter attack and five quick passes they found themselves with a shot on goal that was easily saved by Erie’s goalie Chris Ralph, but it was the rebound and six Rochester players that prevailed as they banged the rebound home to level the game just before the death.
The points today would be shared and Erie’s gap on the top spot was even smaller now.
Contributor: Lane T. King/Erie Commodores FCPhoto
Credit: Jennifer White/Acacia Studios