Toronto FC II was unable to handle a second half offensive spurt from the Charlotte Independence, losing 4-1 at Ramblewood Stadium on Wednesday.
Raheem Edwards had the lone goal for TFC II in the loss.
Once again the young Reds failed to pick up back-to-back wins for the first time this season.
With the win the Charlotte Independence extended their unbeaten streak to an impressive 12 matches and are now tied with the Charleston Battery for 4th in the Eastern Conference with two games remaining in their schedule.
The match between the two clubs was delayed almost an hour as lightning rolled into the area prior to kick off.
It was a slow and sluggish start from both teams following the weather delay with players trying to find their feet and a wet surface not helping their cause.
It was the home team that eventually drew first blood in the 23rd minute of the match.
Daniel Jackson was played through behind the TFC II defense down the right flank and sent in a low cross into the box for Tomasz Zahorski.
Zahorski got tangled up with Wesley Charpie and didn’t get much on the initial shot that was blocked by Skylar Thomas but was able to poke it home on the follow up.
It was a difficult first half for the young Reds as they struggled to keep possession and create chances on a wet pitch.
It was a different storyline in the early stages of the second half as the boys in Red came out strong and were rewarded with a goal in the 51st minute.
Raheem Edwards unleashed a rocket from just outside the 18-yard box into the bottom right corner leaving Charlotte goalkeeper John Berner motionless.
The goal against seemed to spark the Independence as they pushed the attack and retook the lead in the 62nd minute.
Ryan Finley, who had just been subbed on a minute before, finished off a quick passing play in close to give Charlotte the lead.
Finley received a pass from Jorge Herrera inside the box and beat TFC II goalkeeper Alex Bono with a low shot into the bottom left corner.
The Independence increased their lead two minutes after Finley’s tally.
Caleb Calvert picked out Jack Thompson with a cross into the TFC II box and Thompson one-timed a side-footed volley past Bono.
Finley picked up his second of the match in the 89th minute with a great individual effort.
The Charlotte forward made a nice turn to get past two TFC II defenders and was then able to poke it past Bono who was rushing off his line to cut off the angle.
It doesn’t get any easier for TFC II as they travel to Rochester on Saturday to take on the best team in the USL, the Rochester Rhinos.
CHL – Tomasz Zahorski 23’
TFC II – Raheem Edwards 51’
CHL – Ryan Finley 62’ (Jorge Herrera)
CHL – Jack Thompson 64’ (Caleb Calvert)
CHL – Ryan Finley 89
CHL – Raphael Cox 32’ (caution)
TFC II – Anthony Osorio 38’ (caution)
CHL – Patrick Slogic 42’ (caution)
CHL – Carlos Alvarez 49’ (caution)
TFC II – Skylar Thomas 56’ (caution)
Toronto FC II: 6-15-4 22pts.
Charlotte Independence: 10-6-10 40pts.
Toronto FC II – Alex Bono; Wesley Charpie, Skylar Thomas ©, Emeka Ononye, Robert Boskovic (Chris Mannella 61’); Manual Aparicio (Luca Uccello 80’), Anthony Osorio (Marcus Godinho 75’), Malik Johnson, Raheem Edwards; Sal Bernal (Massimo Mirabelli 75’), Reshon Phillip (Jordan Hamilton 58’)
Substitutes Not Used: Quillan Roberts, Daniel Fabrizi
Charlotte Independence – John Berner; Patrick Slogic (Mamadou Kansaye 90’), Raphael Cox (Jack Thompson 61’), Bilal Duckett ©, Henry Kalungi; Andrew Ribeiro, Jack Metcalf, Daniel Jackson (Caleb Calvert 61’), Enzo Martinez (Jorge Herrera HT), Carlos Alvarez; Tomasz Zahorski (Ryan Finley 61’)
Substitutes Not Used: Eric Ati, Brandon Fricke