Aurora FC got off to a dream start in their Matchweek 21 away fixture with Masters FA Saints, going ahead by three goals courtesy of Ezekiel Uadiale (5'), Max Ferarri (11') and Jared Agyemang (64'), but a late game comeback by Masters levelled the final score at 3-3.
"It's tough when you are three nil up and you concede three with only ten minutes to go," said Aurora head coach, Derek O'Keeffe. "I think the boys did really well though."
"For a lot of the lads, it was their first game tonight. A number of them are sixteen and seventeen years old and they played today and last night so considering that and their age, I thought they did really well. I think that little bit of experience showed. We were three nil up and needed to keep the ball and kill the game. We couldn't keep the ball at the end and as a result we gave it back to them and they scored three goals. Credit to them, they didn't give it up, but I think we should have killed it off and maybe got a fourth."
Joey Melo (86'), Justin Robertson (90') and Jose De Sousa (90') mounted the late game come-back for Masters, depositing all three in the space of three minutes. Masters manager Rick Titus regretted the way his side began the contest.
"We had a bad start and seemed to give up goals early in the game," he said. "Mental preparation is sometimes lacking in the players and other times not, but when you are losing games or down that can happen. When you lose two or three in a row, it will happen. I think we responded well in the second half."
"Sometimes you have to do a little bit of fixing and you have to do it quick when you realize that the issue you are trying to fix is going to create problems quickly," he added. "I made some early changes, just after the half, and a couple of them really helped us out."
"Young Justin came in and really helped us out. He was busy, scored a goal, and he did well in our last match too. I will give him a start in the next game, he deserves it. Right now we are looking at guys for next year so we are basically assessing players and looking at new ones coming into our training sessions. We will have a young team next year, and a chance to work with some new energy and faces that we will combine with two or three veteran players that can really enhance their abilities."
Masters FA Saints will next play North Toronto Nitros on September 23 at L'Amoreaux, Scarborough.
Aurora FC will next play Woodbridge Strikers on September 24 at Vaughan Grove, Woodbridge.