Toronto Drops First Reserves Match
Photo: Alvaro Rey played 45 minutes for the Reserves (Giamou/TorontoFC.ca).
Toronto FC lost its first match in the MLS Reserve League on Saturday night 1-0 to USL PRO side Pittsburgh Riverhounds. The Reds finished with 10 players on the pitch after a 74th minute sending off to Kia TFC Academy’s Manuel Aparicio.
Reds got off to a lively start with new Spanish import Alvaro Rey finding Emery Welshman inside the area at the 15th minute. The Canadian took on two defenders before firing wide.
Later in the half Darel Russell missed the target with a shot from 25-yards and Aparicio tried to chip Pittsburgh keeper Hunter Gilstrap from a through ball by Mark Bloom. Toronto controlled the tempo for much of the first half, but unconverted chances came back to haunt them at the 41st minute when the visitors made the most of a rare opportunity.
A combination play between Hounds’ Mike Seth and Jose Angulo set up the latter for a shot on goal. The former New York Red Bulls player hit it from just inside box, giving Pittsburgh the 1-0 lead despite Toronto goalkeeper Stefan Frei getting a touch on the ball. Angulo’s shot was too hot to handle.
Coming out of the intermission Toronto looked to level and nearly found the equalizer through Welshman. A corner from Aparicio found the foot of Russell, his attempt deflected toward the head of Welshman. The Mississauga native’s header sailed just over the bar before the hour mark.
Toronto played with urgency but was continually thwarted by an organized Pittsburgh side happy to sit on their lead for much of the second half until Aparicio’s ejection. At that point the Riverhounds found the space to apply pressure in search of a second goal.
Ten minutes from regulation Angulo nearly got his second of the contest but for the woodwork. The Hounds tested Frei relentlessly in the closing stages, but the Toronto keeper came up with a pair of massive saves, including one against Stefan Lundberg up close at the 87th minute.
The loss was Toronto’s first in the Reserve League against three wins and a draw. The Reds will host Montreal in August on its next Reserve outing. Toronto devastated Montreal 5-0 in their previous meeting.
PIT – Jose Angulo 41’
TFC – Manuel Aparicio 74’ (ejection)
TFC – Darel Russell 90’ (caution)
Toronto FC – Stefan Frei ©; Ryan Richter, Gale Agbossoumonde, *Eli Roubos, Mark Bloom; Alvaro Rey (*Daniel Jodah 45’), Michael Thomas, Kyle Bekker (*Chris Mannella 45’), Darel Russell; *Manuel Aparicio, Emery Welshman
Substitutes not used: Quillan Roberts, *Dylan Sacramento
Pittsburgh Riverhounds – Hunter Gilstrap; Sterling Flunder, Rich Costanzo ©, Mike Green, Andrew Marshall; Rob Vincent (Stefan Lundberg 70’), Kevin Kerr, Seth C’Debacia, Matt Dallman (Jhonny Arteaga 79’); Mike Seth (Ryan Kinne 79’), Jose Angulo
Substitutes Not Used: Greg Blum, Anthony Vazquez, Alfonso Motagalvan