Defending National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) Champion New York Cosmos B won their third straight match, defeating the Rhode Island Reds by a score of 4-1 at LIU Post in Brookville, Long Island Saturday evening.
“A win is a win,” head coach Fernando Barboto said after the victory. “A win is always good. Three points at home is always a mandatory for a home team.”
After trading possession with Rhode Island for the first 15 minutes of the match, Cosmos B struck first after Jesus Alvarez assisted Ivan Berterame in the box for the opening marker of the game in the 16th minute. Just two minutes later, Trey Williams knocked in another ball in the box to make it 2-0 Cosmos B.
Williams would complete a first half brace in the 43rd minute as he received a pass from Berterame to make it 3-0 Cosmos B before the first half whistle blew.
Speaking about his team’s first half game plan, Coach Barboto lauded his players for how they used a field that was different than the normal Hofstra Soccer Stadium or James M. Shuart Stadium field they were accustomed to.
“I think our players seized the opportunity that was given to them,” Barboto said. “Our game plan was to really stretch the opponent out with the big field, and [our guys] seemed to have done that. The moments they had, they took well and scored three in that first half.”
Rhode Island was aggressive as play resumed in the second half and it showed in a 46th minute yellow card shown to Bruno Scodari, who put out a hard challenge that sent a Cosmos B player into a collision course with the scorer’s table. Scodari had previously picked up a yellow card in the first half for a rough slide tackle and the Reds would have play the rest of the match a man down.
The man disadvantage for Rhode Island did not faze the Reds as nine minutes after Scodari was sent off, Nicolas Lozada-Smith knocked in a goal to cut Cosmos B’s lead to two.
The rest of the second half was highlighted by gritty play as both sides traded possession, just as it had been for the majority of the first half. Cosmos B’s next scoring chance came in the 77th minute as Franklin Castellanos charged down the right flank and rocketed a shot on frame that ricocheted off the crossbar.
However, Cosmos B would regain their three-goal advantage in the 87th minute as an unmarked Alejandro Mitrano, who came on in the 68th minute, charged down the left flank after receiving a pass from Per Eik Forgaard and knocked in a goal to make it 4-1 Cosmos B, which would be the final score of the match.
“With three straight, we’ve definitely been scoring some goals. I don’t think we had our best game today, but I think we did well enough for it to be a 4-1 game.”
On what his team could do better heading into their next match, Coach Barboto said that he always looks for a chance for his goalkeepers to keep a clean sheet.
“We want to get a shutout,” he said. “The number one thing in our plan is to get a shutout our next game.”
Barboto’s squad will have a chance to execute that game plan this upcoming Saturday, as New York Cosmos B will host Greater Lowell United FC at 4 p.m. ET at James M. Shuart Stadium. The NPSL match is part of a July 2nd Cosmos doubleheader as the New York Cosmos will open their 2016 North American Soccer League Fall Season against Ottawa Fury FC at 7 p.m. ET, in a rematch of the 2015 NASL Championship Final.