Stefan Frei

Reds Rebuked In The Rain

A first half penalty from Nathan Sturgis wasn't enough as Toronto FC lost 2-1 to Charleston Battery in preseason on a rainy Wednesday night in their second match of the Carolina Challenge Cup.

Toronto took the lead at the 14th minute of the first half when Sturgis made no mistake beating goalkeeper Keith Wiggans from the spot to give the Reds a 1-0 lead. Toronto was awarded the penalty after Nigel Marples was charged with a handball in the box after Jacob Peterson’s cross into the box.

Toronto continued the pressure throughout the half, in the 30th minute the Reds had another chance on goal as trialist defender Dicoy Williams sent a ball down the left side and Keith Makubuya beat the defender but fired wide.

Charleston then turned up the pressure late in the half and earned an equalizer four minutes from halftime via Mike Kelly. The initial shot was blocked but failed to clear and Kelly made no mistake smashing the ball in the bottom right corner to beat Toronto goalkeeper Stefan Frei.

Toronto made two changes at the half with Academy defender Ashtone Morgan replacing Nana Attakora and Ty Harden made way for Dan Gargan. The rain picked up ten minutes into the second half and Charleston earned an opportunity to go ahead with a penalty.

Mikael Yourassowsky moved to centre back where he fouled Kelly in the box, earning a rebuke from the referee and giving the Battery a chance from the spot. Charleston's Mike Zaher stepped to the dot and although he was stopped by Toronto keeper Stefan Frei on the initial shot, the rebound fell onto his foot and he converted to give the hometown Battery the 2-1 lead.

In the 58th minute Matt Gold replaced Nick LaBrocca in the Toronto midfield and provided help on both sides of the ball. The teams made substitutions through the remainder of the half but neither could add another goal making the final 2-1 for Charleston.

Toronto will conclude its preseason on Saturday at 5:00 p.m. ET against D.C. United from Charleston live on

Scoring summary:
Toronto FC: Nathan Stugis 14' PK
Charleston Battery: Dane Kelly 43', Mike Zaher 57'

Missed Penalty:

Toronto FC: None
Charleston Battery: Mike Zaher 57'

Caution summary:
Toronto FC: Nick La Brocca 55'
Charleston: Mike Zaher 27', Evan Taylor 36', Dane Kelly 45'

Toronto FC (4-3-3): Stefan Frei, Ty Harden (Dan Gargan 46'), Nana Attakora (Ashtone Morgan 46’), Dicoy Williams, Mikael Yourassowsky, Nick LaBrocca (Matt Gold 58'), Oscar Cordon (Andrew Ornoch 63'), Nathan Sturgis, Jacob Peterson, Javier Martina, Keith Makubuya (Nick Soolsma 70')

Charleston (4-4-2): Keith Wiggans (Andrew Dykstra 46’), Nigel Marples, Graham Dugoni (Mark Wiltze 46'), Sean Flately (Gui Keis 46'), Mike Zaher, Zach Prince (Jose Cuevas 46'), Kevin Jackson (Luke Mulholand 46'), Evan Taylor (Alex Caskey 46'), J.C. Mack (Jerry Santol 46'), Dane Kelly (Nico Rittemeyer 62'), Levi Coleman (Seedy Bait 46')