Team 1 2 F
Orlando City 1 1 2
Toronto FC 1 1 2
OC – John Rooney 1 (penalty) 17
TFC - Miguel Aceval 1 (free kick) 24
OC – Kevin Molino 1 (Charlie Campbell 1) 54
TFC - Torsten Frings 1 (unassisted) 65
ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando City opened the 2012 Disney Pro Soccer Classic with a hard-fought 2-2 draw against Toronto FC. John Rooney and Kevin Molino each scored for Orlando, who drew its third match in as many tries against MLS squads in 2012.
City started the match on attack, with Orlando’s first real chance appearing in the 15th minute. Max Griffin out-ran Toronto’s back line, getting an open look on the right side of the goal. The forward was then taken down by the collar, earning City its second penalty kick chance in as many games.
John Rooney, looking for redemption after his last penalty kick was saved, lined up to take the shot. Rooney ran up, stopped, then nailed a low-lying ball into the lower right corner to put Orlando up 1-0 early on in the match.
“I always felt confident in my penalty shot,” said Rooney. “This time I happened to make the right move. I’m happy I capitalized on the opportunity.”
It didn’t take too long for Toronto to respond. An Orlando foul gave TFC a free kick from 25 yards out. Miguel Aceval stepped up and lifted his shot toward the upper 90 of the far post. Rob Valentino looked to have gotten a head on the ball for a clearance, but the ball merely ricocheted, leaving CIty Goalkeeper Miguel Gallardo no chance of stopping the attempt. With the match level at 1-1, City resumed their attack, but the half ended without any additional fireworks.
Orlando started out the second half with a big statement. In the 54th minute, Charlie Campbell timed his run perfectly and snuck past Toronto’s offside trap. Campbell baited TFC Goalkeeper Stefan Frei, drawing him off his line before laying off to Kevin Molino, sprinting to his right into open space. Molino’s first shot was stopped by a TFC defender scrambling back to cover, but he quickly put back the rebound, giving Orlando City the 2-1 lead.
Toronto was down, by they were by no means out of the match. Just minutes later, some confusion in front of the net gave TFC the opening they needed. City’s back line failed to clear a ball, forcing Gallardo off his line. Former German international Torsten Frings beat Gallardo to the loose ball and fired it into the open net.
After a few subs brought on fresh legs, City regained their composure and went into an all-out attack. Dennis Chin broke away from the pack in the 70th minute, leaving only Frei and the net in front of him. Chin got too close as Frei dived for the ball, snatching it from the forward as he was in mid-stride. A similar situation occurred minutes later, as Chin laid off a ball mid-sprint for Molino but Frei scooped the ball before a real shot occurred. Frei completed his heroic effort by diving and stopping a low, rolling shot by trialist Nick Sowers just before it crossed the line. The match ended with City feeling they let one slip away.
“I thought we are a lot better team than we showed tonight,” said Head Coach Adrian Heath. “I think that we missed on some opportunities and should’ve capitalized late in the match. We’re definitely a better team than this.”
Fortunately for the Lions, they were not punished for their draw. FC Dallas and BK Hacken also drew, 1-1 in the second match of the evening. By virtue of goals scored, Orlando City and Toronto FC now sit tied for first in Pool 2.
City’s next match will be Tuesday, February 28, against Dallas. Orlando last faced Dallas in the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, falling 3-2 on a last second goal by Milton Rodriguez. Kickoff is set for 8 p.m, immediately following the Toronto/BK Hacken match at 6 p.m. Tickets are available on Ticketmaster.com and at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Box Office.
TFC – Junior Burgos (handball) 84
Orlando City: Miguel Gallaro, Jerome Mechack, Rob Valentino, Kieron Bernard (Wes Allen 61), Luke Boden (Erik Ustruck, 72), Kevin Molino (Nick Sowers 83), Anthony Pulis, James O’Connor (Don Smart 66), John Rooney (Dustin McCarty 72), Charlie Campbell (Adama Mbenge 76), Max Griffin (Dennis Chin 61)
Toronto FC: Stefan Frei, Ashtone Morgan (Kevin Huezo), Miguel Aceval (Michael Green), Geovanny Caicedo (Aaron Maund 46), Richard Eckersley (Doneil Henry 46), Terry Dunfield (Oscar Cordon), Eric Avila (Matt Stinson), Torsten Frings (Sergio Camargo), Joao Plata (Junior Burgos), Danny Koevermans (Nick Soolsma 32), Reggie Lambe (Moises Orozco)
Team 1 2 F