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Archive for July, 2010
Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Corporal nets hat-trick as Croatia finds its offence

Preston Corporal weaves his way through two London City defenders.

Former Liberian National Team player Preston Corporal led Hamilton Croatia with a hat-trick to a convincing 6-2 victory over London City at Brian Timmis Stadium in Hamilton, the only game played in the CSL Friday night.

Hamilton forward Jason Shannon opened the scoring after 10 minutes, to be followed with Corporal’s first two goals at 30 and 37 minutes for a 3-0 lead by the home side.

Corporal’s first goal was a play started by Aidan O’Keefe who collected the ball wide, passed to Shannon who moved the ball inside to Corporal for a low strike out of reach of London goalkeeper Scott Mueller.

Shannon was shown a red card just after receiving a second caution at 34 minutes, and London’s Genti Buzali scored close to the interval for a 3-1 score at half-time.

Boris Vurdelja increased the lead for Hamilton Croatia at the 61st minute mark and the effervescent Corporal, known for his quick attractive style, scored his third for a 5-1 score at 67 minutes.

Michael Marcoccia of London City reduced the lead to 5-2 at 72 minutes, but Jerko Grubisic rounded the scoring at 6-2 for Hamilton Croatia at the 87th minute mark.

Hamilton Croatia improve to third in the CSL standings as a result of the win, they now have a 6-3-5 WLT record for 23 points, while London City remain in 13th position with a 1-7-4 record for 7 points.

It’s Preston Corporal’s first season with Hamilton Croatia and the 23 year-old striker is quickly developing a reputation as one of the top forwards in the CSL.

Source: http://canadiansoccerleague.ca/

Monday, July 26th, 2010

CSL’s top offence stymied by best backline

Croatia defender Tom Bilic is shown a yellow card in the second half.

Frank Perin — The White Eagles got a goal in the first half and played a rough-and-tumble style which seemed to throw off the Hamilton Croatia players and crowd en route to a 1-0 road win at Brian Timmis Stadium.

Eagles’ goalie Milos Kocic, who is also the third-string keeper for Major League Soccer’s Toronto FC, made three or four game changing saves, including one inside the first ten minutes.

Hamilton striker Preston Corporal was robbed early on from inside the six-yard box by a sprawling Kocic, who showed on numerous occasions why the Eagles have allowed a league-best six goals against through ten games this season.

The teams seemed reluctant to open up as they both waited for their opportunities to counter-attack one another.

The winning goal came at 32 minutes, a lone strike by forward Sasa Viciknez from 10 yards bounced in off the post behind Hamilton goalkeeper Cam McKay.

Physicality ruled the remainder of the first half, as well as most of the second.

Rough, sometimes reckless play led to a chippy affair with plenty of stoppages and a barrage of cards. At least 13 players had been shown a yellow card, including goal-scorer Viciknez, who picked up a second yellow card to be dismissed at the 74th minute mark.

Croatia did mount a comeback effort as the game neared an end but the Eagles’ defence and goalkeeper stood strong enough to come away with the three points.

Following the weekend’s games Hamilton Croatia is in fifth position with a 5-5-3 record for 20 points and now await last-placed London City for a 9 p.m. showdown this Friday at Brian Timmis Stadium.

Monday, July 19th, 2010

Late equalizer by Grubisic earns point for Hamilton

Croatia midfielder Danny Jirta battles for a loose ball with a Galaxy player.

Tom Kennedy, Brant News — The Brantford Galaxy survived 90 minutes of soccer against Hamilton Croatia on Sunday, only to allow them back into the game in injury time.

With less than seven minutes remaining in the Canadian Soccer League game at Lions Park, the Galaxy had a 3-2 lead before being forced to play the rest of the game with 10 men on the field and eventually end in a 3-3 tie.

But it wasn’t due to a penalty and subsequent red card that the Galaxy were down a man.

Late in the game, Galaxy player Zach Tait was accidentally kicked in the head by a Hamilton Croatia player and had to leave the field with a suspected concussion. The Galaxy had used all of their five substitutions at that point and so had to play at a disadvantage.

On top of the Galaxy being down a man, regular goaltender Ante Domjanovic had to leave the game early in the second half, after he suffered a lower-body injury while kicking the ball.

While backup goaltender Kyle Bissonette made some crucial saves during his time in net, the favoured Domjanovic could have been the difference maker.

The game was quite a physical and well-matched affair, with five yellow cards handed out in total, three to Hamilton and two to Brantford.

The Galaxy got off the mark 10 minutes into the game, with ever-present threat Drazen Vukovic making a break down the left of the field, drawing Hamilton goalkeeper Cameron McKay and crossing to Ranko Golijanin who buried the ball into the net off his head.

Hamilton Croatia answered five minutes later when Preston Corporal forced his way through the midfield and was met by Domjanovic who made an initial diving save but deflected the ball back onto the boot of Corporal who didn’t miss the second time.

The Galaxy led 2-1 at halftime, following another impressive show by Vukovic, who again broke down the left but this time held the ball and sent a missile of a shot past McKay and into the top right of the net.

Twenty minutes into the second, Bissonette had his first real test when Hamilton’s Aidan O’Keefe was sent down the field and easily beat the Brantford goalie to tie the score 2-2.

While Hamilton Croatia relied on some long, probing passes down field to try to get their strikers into space, the Galaxy focused on midfield attack, working a lot of passes.

With less than 10 minutes left in regular time, Galaxy defender Patrick Gerhardt took a corner kick and combined with Marsalis Beckford’s head for their team’s third and final goal.

However, it was shortly after the goal that Galaxy defender Tait received the kick to the head and was eventually helped from the field with two minutes of regular time and five minutes of injury time to play.

With a minute and a half left in injury time, Hamilton’s Corporal drew Bissonette and crossed to Jerko Grubisic to score the equalizer.

Source: http://www.brantnews.com/

Saturday, July 17th, 2010

Home field dominance for Milltown FC continues

Aidan O'Keefe scored his eighth goal.

Hamilton Croatia scored first but Milltown FC had the last laugh in a battle of two CSL expansion franchises.

Aidan O’Keefe executed a perfect chip shot from 20 yards out that eluded the finger tips of Milltown FC goalkeeper Scott Cliff to find the top corner of the net after just two minutes of play. It was O’Keefe’s eighth goal of the season.

It took just six minutes for the home side to get on level terms.

MFC midfielder Martijn Kuijpers slid a through-ball up the middle that Agustin DeMedina was able to reach just ahead of an onrushing Cameron McKay. DeMedina directed the ball just past the ‘keepers outstretched arms and into the back of the net for a 1-1 tie at the interval.

After those two early goals, the remaining 38 minutes featured fairly even possession of the ball but not a lot of great scoring opportunities as the Milltown and Hamilton defenders did a good job of keeping most of those chances to the outside.

With both teams battling for top honors in the CSL First Division, the game picked up in intensity during the second half.

At the 70th minute winger Lesley St. Fleur whipped a low cross into the Hamilton box, and Cordell Benjamin struck his third of the season with a strong drive that went straight for the roof of the net.

Hamilton applied quite a bit of pressure trying to find an equalizer, but a combination of strong defending and excellent goalkeeping kept the visitors at bay, and Milltown held the lead to the final whistle for a 2-1 victory.

Sources: http://canadiansoccerleague.ca/ & http://www.milltownfc.com/

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

Hamilton wins by five for second time in three games

Newcomer Boris Vurdelja scored a goal in his first start for Hamilton.

Frank Perin — If last week’s 3-1 win over Brampton was not “pretty”, this one made up for it five times over.

Hamilton Croatia received goals from five different players as they began their three-game road trip with a convincing 5-0 thrashing of Portugal FC at Lamport Stadium.

Midfielder Boris Vurdelja opened the scoring at the six-minute mark with a picturesque free kick. The latest Croatian addition from NK Belišće struck the dead-ball from 30 yards out, bent it around the wall, and dipped it into the bottom-right corner of the net past Portugal’s diving goalkeeper Mike Silva for his first-ever CSL goal.

20 minutes later midfielder Sandro Rajkovic blasted home his first goal from in tight off a corner kick, and Hamilton carried the 2-0 lead into half-time.

The visitors kept up the pace in the second half.

At 57 minutes defender Antonijo Zupan increased the lead to 3-0 by tapping home a loose ball from the top of the six-yard box, and midfielder Danny Jirta hit a left-footed screamer past Silva for his second goal of the season to make it 4-0 at 70 minutes.

The Croatian fans that made the trip to Toronto’s west-end began chanting “we want five”, much like former professional wrestler King Kong Bundy, who had a tendency to ask the referee for a five count (as opposed to the usual three count) whenever he dominated his opponent.

Striker Jason Shannon obliged the spectators by scoring his fourth goal of the year at 86 minutes to round out the scoring for a 5-0 final.

The win temporarily moved Hamilton Croatia to second position until TFC Academy won at home on Saturday over North York. Croatia is now in third, tied on 19 points with this Friday’s opponent Milltown FC. The game is at Bishop Reding at 8 p.m.

It is their first of two important matches this weekend. Hamilton also travels to Lions Park in Brantford for a Sunday afternoon road game against the dangerous Galaxy. That kickoff is at 7 p.m.

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