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Title: CSL Week 5

Rocket Robin - June 14, 2008 04:15 PM (GMT)
Result of the Friday June 13, 2008 CSL game between Toronto Croatia and Trois-Rivieres Attak played at The Hershey Centre in Mississauga at 8:00pm.

Final Score:……Toronto Croatia……0……..Trois-Rivieres Attak……..0……?(game called at 70 minutes)

Attendance was about 100 on this mild, humid, overcast evening.

Referee Vito Curalli suspended the game at 70 minutes because of lightening closing in upon the area. It had started to rain very hard just a few minutes early but lightning was enough to call the game as the portable stands are made out of aluminum. After 20 minutes with players and fans hiding in the dressing room, hallways and bathrooms, the game was called off. Curalli told me it’s up to the league to decide how they’ll treat this game (replay, tie in the standings, etc).

The rain and lightning continued after the game was called and the field was flooded even though it was a field turf. The storm followed me as I drove home but I found on television that the USL Vancouver at Rochester game was rain delayed before it began and never was played.

Roy Blanche was the goalie for Toronto Croatia and had by far the more spectacular saves to keep a shutout. The Attak stormed out fast and kept most of the action in the Croatia end 18 minutes. At 15 minutes, Attak’s Hector Contreras pushed a ball ahead up the middle from 30 yards and Nicholas Moussavou kicked a 15 yarder shot that Blanche flew over and stopped at 8 yards and covered to prevent a rebound. A minute later Blanche stopped Moussavou’s 15 yard scissor kick. Two minutes later after great Attak pressure, Moussavou’s diving header was pushed wide of the net by a diving Blanche on the right post.

Andrew Olivieri earned the shutout for the Attak. He wasn’t tested until the 19th minute when Marko Bendinikovic crossed from the right end line and Jonatan Bustamante chipped a shot from 18 yards that the goalie caught on the left post.

More chances for both teams occurred at 27 minutes when Attak’s Davy Uwimana from up the middle curled a 25 yard shot into the outside left webbing of the net. Croatia’s Mario Pupic had the closest chance of the game when his 30 yard freekick from the left hit the left goalpost over the diving goalie and the ball was cleared. Two minutes later an Attak 40 yard freekick from the right sideline had a leaping Jean Philippe Etienne head the ball well over the bar from 12 yards. He followed that up two minutes later when he headed Hector Contreras’s cornerkick over the net from 15 yards.

The second half started with lightning getting closer, Croatia looked a lot better. At 52 minutes, Hugo Herrera eluded defenders to blast a 10 yard shot that the goalie stopped point blank and the rebound deflected off TC Tihomir Maletic’s foot and over the net. At 63 minutes, Herrera bends a 22 yard freekick over the player wall and the goalie sprawled to block the shot and pick up the rebound. Last chance and in the rain, Attak’s Jean Louis Besse rushed along the left and rolled a cross through the TC box just steps ahead of a charging Nicolas Moussavou.

At least the rain and lightning drove the mosquitoes away from the swamp not far away. A hard rain makes taking notes about impossible.

There was no tribute to Brian Budd who died the day before. His obit photo showed him playing with Toronto Metros-Croatia back in May 1978. I don’t think there was anyone there who goes back to the team that far. I wore a Toronto Blizzard t-shirt but even that was vintage 1993 APSL days. He was an early encourager of my web page when I met him in a pub some years ago. Although my pages are falling behind as I argue with my service provider about replacing my broken modem, I know I’ll pull it around.

Rocket Robin

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