PHOENIX – One Game and One Win. Toronto FC II pulled out an impressive victory to open their 2017 campaign.
In front of a record crowd of 6,890, the Young Reds put together a complete team performance to defeat the star-studded Phoenix Rising FC.
The Young Reds held off an early barrage from the hosts, before hitting them on an early counter. First team loanee Jay Chapman played a through ball for the towering Ben Spencer to run onto. Spencer streaked into the box before sending a low driven ball towards Ryan Telfer.
Telfer, who had just signed with the team on Thursday, was making his first professional start. The product of York University got his right foot to the ball and sent it high into the top right corner. And just like that, the Young Reds were in front before ten minutes.
Offseason signing Mark Pais also made his debut for the Reds in the match. The former St. Louis FC keeper made several key stops in the half to keep Shaun Wright-Phillips and the rest of Phoenix Rising FC off the scoreboard.
The second half saw both teams trade several chances. The greatest opportunity for the Reds came when the former TFC II, now first team winger Raheem Edwards gathered the ball in the box, before making a big cut to his right and firing a rocket of a shot on goal. Phoenix keeper Josh Cohen had to be sharp to prevent Edwards from doubling the lead.
Head Coach Jason Bent sent out his side in the familiar TFC 3-5-2 system. Despite the limited time spent together as a unit in preseason, the team, and specifically the back three of Oyvind Alseth, Lars Eckenrode and Brandon Aubrey were impressive in leading the team to their first road clean sheet since 2015.
The Young Reds are back in action next Saturday at 7:30 PM when they travel to Tampa Bay to take on the Rowdies. Keep up to date with all your TFCII news at tfc2.ca
TFC II – Ryan Telfer 8’ (Ben Spencer)
PHX – Greer 65’ (caution)
PHX – Gray 82’ (caution)
TFC II – Brandon Onkony 89’ (caution)
Toronto FC II (W-D-L): 1-0-0 3pts.
Phoenix Rising FC (W-D-L): 0-0-1 0pts.
Toronto FC II – Mark Pais; Oyvind Alseth, Brandon Aubrey, Lars Eckenrode (Brandon Onkony 70’); Brian James, Tsubasa Endoh (Jordan McCrary 63’), Markey Delgado, Jay Chapman, Raheem Edwards; Ben Spencer, Ryan Telfer (Ricardo John 87’)
Substitutes Not Used: Angelo Cavalluzzo, Anthony Osorio, Liam Fraser
Phoenix Rising FC – Cohen; Vásquez, Wakasa (Gray 80’), Ramage, Greer; Watson, Rooney (Riggi 68’), Shaun Wright-Phillips, Seth (Cortez 62’), Johnson; Bravo
Substitutes Not Used: Woszczynski, , Gavin, Hernandez, Uzo