IMPACT 1 PUERTO RICO 2
The three goals were scored in less than 15 minutes during the first half.
The Islanders opened the scoring at the 24th minute on a goal from midfielder Aaron Pitchkolan. Following a corner kick deflected in front of the net, Pitchkolan scored in an empty net.
Impact midfielder Amir Lowery tied the game at the 35th minute, scoring his first goal of the season and his second career goal in North American second division. From the right flank, forward Mignane Diouf gave the ball to midfielder Idriss Ech Chergui, who then passed to Lowery, who scored without controlling the ball from the 6-yard box.
However, Puerto Rico scored the game-winning goal less than three minutes later. Defender Kevon Villaroel centered the ball for forward Nicholas Addlery, at the penalty mark, who then scored on a header to the right of Impact goalkeeper Bill Gaudette.
“We tried to get the win throughout the whole game," said Impact head coach Marc Dos Santos. "We played one of our best games of the year in terms of ball circulation and the players fought for each other. We saw tonight the team we want to be. We were stronger, faster and better than against Atlanta. However, we allowed two goals due to a lack of concentration on two set plays.”
Bill Gaudette left the game at the 42nd minute due to an ankle injury, after a contact with Kevin Hatchi and Addlery on top of the 18-yard box.
Goalkeeper Evan Bush, who replaced him, made a key save at the 68th minute, stopping a point blank shot from Addlery.
The Islanders had another scoring chance at the 75th minute when a point blank shot from Josh Hansen, went a few inches away from the net.
Addlery then took advantage of a counter attack at the 90th minute. On a one on one situation, his left footed shot went just over the Impact net.
The Impact had a golden opportunity in added time in the second half when Ech Chergui’s bicycle kick went to the right of the Islanders’ net. Earlier in the game, at the 54th minute, Ech Chergui took a strong shot that was stopped by Islanders goalkeeper Ray Burse.
The Impact players wore a black ribbon during the game, to honour the memory of a family member of team captain Nevio Pizzolitto.
Midfielder Antonio Ribeiro served an automatic one-game suspension against Puerto Rico after being ejected from the game at the 89th minute in Atlanta for receiving a second yellow card in the game.
Striker Ali Gerba is currently with the Canadian National Team for the 2011 CONCACAF Gold Cup. After losing 2-0 against the USA on Tuesday and winning against Guadeloupe on Saturday night, Canada will face Panama on Tuesday, in Kansas City.
The Impact will return to Montreal on Monday after six days on the road. While seven of the first 10 games of the season were played on the road, seven of the next 10 games will be played at Saputo Stadium.
The club will play its next match against the Fort Lauderdale Strikers, on Saturday, June 18, at 2:30pm (Radio-Canada, CKAC Sports, THE TEAM 990, radio-canada.ca/sports). Tickets for this game are still available through Admission Network (admission.com / 514-790-1245) or at Saputo Stadium’s ticketing office.
THREE NEXT GAMES
• Saturday, June 18–Fort Lauderdale Strikers @ IMPACT – Saputo Stadium – 2:30pm
• Sunday, June 26 – IMPACT @ FC Edmonton – Foote Field – 4:05pm
• Wednesday, June 29 – Puerto Rico Islanders @ IMPACT – Saputo Stadium – 7:30pm