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Blue Devils Head Into Playoffs As Top Seed, While Masters, North Miss, Sigma And Alliance All Book Spots

08/19/2019, 6:00pm EDT
By League1 Ontario staff

(Photo: Kevin Raposo Photography)


(Photo: Bob Twidle)


(Photo: Martin Bazyl Photography)

After a late 1-nil win over Windsor TFC, Oakville Blue Devils went top of the regular season table on Matchweek 15 - the final weekend of matches ahead of the 2019 League1 Ontario Championship - and took top seed going into the playoff period against opponents, Woodbridge Strikers. 

Elsewhere, Alliance, Masters, North Mississauga and Sigma FC all booked their spots in the League1 Ontario Championship. Who will they face? 

Read all about the matches below, with full match video, photos and #playoffs2019 event detail included!


(Photo: Martin Bazyl Photography)


(Photo: Martin Bazyl Photography)


(Photo: Martin Bazyl Photography)

North Mississauga SC were pinned back in the first half but stormed forward in the second to beat Sigma FC 3-0 and clinch a playoff spot, thanks to Adel Rahman's (46', 87', 90' + 2') hat-trick.

Sigma FC dominated early doors, pinning back the hosts in their own half.

A giveaway by North Mississauga keeper - Jared Maloney to Sigma's Tyriq Armstrong - could have been costly, but the keeper made it up by parrying out the striker's shot from the edge of the box. Moments later, Elijah Larin almost scored for Sigma, but his low finish from six yards was saved by Maloney .

After those scares, North Mississauga came forward and could have taken the lead one minute before the end of the first forty-five minutes, as Adel Rahman's free header from close range rattled the post and Jordan Prescod mis-kicked the follow-up in front of an open goal.

At the dawn of the second half, Darren Gertiesingh pulled back for Adel Rahman's (46') shot from inside the box into the back of the net to give the lead to North Mississauga.

The hosts in momentum, but were creating few real scoring chances. On 64 minutes, Sundin Esperance's low shot from 15 yards was denied by Sigma keeper, Jack Cristini, and Nicola Russo's attempt on the rebound went wide.

Ivica Sunjka almost scored a goal in 79 minutes, but his finish from point-blank range on an Adel Rahman cross from the right was off target.

Adel Rahman (87') made it 2-0 from the edge of the box off a substitute Rahim Thorpe angled pass.

In the second minute of the six minutes of the stoppage time, Adel Rahman (90' + 2') completed his hat-trick, as his first attempt on a free kick was blocked by the wall but his second went into the back of the net to seal a 3-0 win for his side.

With the win, North Mississauga qualified for playoffs in sixth position in the table and will play Alliance United FC over two legs in the 2019 League1 Ontario Quarter-Finals.

The two legs of this Quarter-Final tie are:

Sunday August 25 (2:30 p.m.) @ Paramount Fine Foods, Mississauga

Thursday September 5 (8:45 p..m.) @ Centennial College, Toronto  

Despite the loss, Sigma FC also qualify for playoffs in fifth position in the table and will play Masters FA over two legs in the 2019 League1 Ontario Quarter-Finals.

The two legs of this Quarter-Final tie are:

Saturday August 24 (noon) @ Paramount Fine Foods, Mississauga

Saturday September 7 (8 p.m.) @ L'Amoreaux Sports Centre, Toronto

(Mahdi Ghaffaribarzi)


(Photo: Bob Twidle)

Oakville Blue Devils were named regular season men's league champions after defeating Windsor TFC 1-0.

The goal came from Luka Frankovich (37') with a shutout from keeper, Lucas Birnstigl.

It was a slow start to the match. Both teams had approximately equal possession and mostly played in the middle third.

It wasn't until the 23rd minute when Blue Devils had their first real chance to score. A low cross along the floor was able to just get past the Windsor keeper. However, Windsor's defence came together quickly and didn't allow Oakville to find the back of the net.

Just ten minutes later, Windsor's keeper, Fells, made a remarkable stretch to tip the ball wide of the opposing striker's foot. This save kept Oakville from scoring a breakaway goal.

Oakville finally got the first and only goal of the match in the 37 th minute by Frankovich (37'). The goal came from a corner kick that bounced off a couple of players' heads before Frankovich could put his head on the ball and put it in the back of the net.

Right before the first half ended, Windsor had their strongest chance for a goal; a close-range free-kick taken by Mayorga went past the wall but wide of the net.

In the second half, Oakville almost got a second goal in the 52nd minute but there was a miscommunication from the strikers that resulted in a corner.

Also, in the 64th minute, Oakville almost got a second but the keeper made a beautiful reaction save.

The game ended with only the one goal from Oakville Blue Devils, the victory handing them the league title.

The key player for Oakville was their goal scorer, Frankovich, who also had some other dangerous plays. The key player for Windsor was Ard Deiker who kept the middle of Windsor's formation strong.

Oakville Blue Devils will now play Woodbridge Strikers over two legs in the 2019 League1 Ontario Championship. The match schedule for this playoff tie is:

Saturday August 24 (2 p.m.) @ Vaughan Grove, Woodbridge

Sunday September 8 (4 p.m.) @ Bronte Athletic Park, Oakville

(Kristina Brooks)


(Photo: Martin Bazyl Photography)

Alliance United FC scored five unanswered first half goals to decisively secure three points and a five-nil win over Durham United FA.

Alliance United FC travelled to Kinsmen Park eyeing three crucial points to give themselves a chance to top the league's 2019 regular season table.

They got the job done with a 5-0 victory over Durham United FA, but unfortunately for them their table-topping fate was out of their hands as the Oakville Blue Devils defeated Windsor TFC just minutes later in Windsor. Still, Alliance finished their regular season comfortably in a third position - good for one of the four seeded positions going into playoffs. 

Alliance were relentless with their attack right from kickoff. The scored five quick goals to put the match out of hand by the 26th minute (2', 14', 22', 24', 26'). A. Sivananthan, Francis, Yuma, and Da Silva (brace) all put their names on the score-sheet by catching the Durham defenders flat-footed from the start of the match.

Durham were able to get the ball into the attacking third a fair amount, however their pace down the wings was matched by the Alliance defenders, who repeatedly forced the Durham attackers into the corners, preventing the forwards from creating any quality chances.

Alliance were dominant with their attack and converted on their chances more often than not, scoring five goals while totaling eight shots on target. Their fourth goal was of the highest quality, as central midfielder Nicholas Osorio drove into the eighteen yard box before finding an open Kevin Da Silva with a beautiful cut-back pass. Da Silva made no mistake and buried the ball into the bottom right corner of the net.

Alliance had a few chances off set pieces, but were unable to convert largely due to Durham goalkeeper Nathaniel Craik. Craik settled into the game well after Alliance's initial wave of goals, ensuring Alliance did not get on the score-sheet after the 26th minute, however his team was unable to convert attacking chances and reward him for his recovery.

Durham United FA played their final match of the season tonight, as they were unable to qualify for the playoffs. They finish their first season back in League1 Ontario in 14th position with a 2-11-2 record.

With the win, Alliance United qualified for playoffs in third position in the table and will play North Mississauga SC over two legs in the 2019 League1 Ontario Quarter-Finals.

The two legs of this Quarter-Final tie are:

Sunday August 25 (2:30 p.m.) @ Paramount Fine Foods Centre, Mississauga

Thursday September 5 (8:45 p.m.) @ Centennial College, Toronto

(Felix Chau)


(Photo: Martin Bazyl Photography)

Masters FA secured a fourth-place finish in the dying minutes of the game as they manage a 1-0 win over resolute Ottawa South United team at L'Amoreaux Sports Centre on Saturday afternoon. 

After keeping the game scoreless for two halves, Ottawa goalkeeper Luka Vujicic dove in his box to punch a ball away, but inadvertently clipped a Masters attacker to concede the foul and the penalty, much to the dismay of the away team.

Francis Ameyaw (90') tucked his spot kick into the bottom corner for his eighth goal of the season as Vujicic dove the opposite way, and the Saints marched away with the victory to ensure a top-half berth in the playoff bracket. 

Ottawa looked to use the speed of their young players to set the tone of the game. Devyn Viegas broke through in the third minute to unleash an early shot, but it slid wide of the post, a common occurrence in the first half for both teams. 

Ameyaw had a chance to open the scoring in the 14th minute as he floated in the air to head the ball down to ground, but it also bounced wide of the net. 

Nicolas Padilla intercepted a pass from his right back position in the 19th minute, driving it up the field with acres of space in front of him. However, his ensuing shot flew over the crossbar.

In an effort to preserve the health of his playoff-bound players after a grueling season, head coach Rick Titus made four half-time substitutions for Masters. But the narrative remained the same as both teams were unable to score.

Ottawa tried to take the lead in the 75th minute after firing a quick shot, but Daniel Gosciniak dropped low to parry it away for his lone save to preserve the clean sheet along with first-half goalkeeper Spiridon Koskinas.

Vujicic had a busier time in net as he had to track back and cover the distance to make a goal-line save in the 84th minute. The Force goalkeeper made four saves in his first League1 Ontario appearance of 2019.
 
Masters FA (9-3-3) reach the playoffs after narrowly missing out by two points last season. With their 30-point finish, the Saints post their first playoff bound season since they joined the league in 2014. Their goal differential sits at +15 (33 GF, 18 GA).

Ottawa South United (0-14-1) finish their winless season with one point from their lone draw against Vaughan Azzurri. Their goal differential finishes at -28 (1 GF, 29 GA).

Masters FA qualify for playoffs in fourth position in the table - the final seeded position - and will play Sigma FC over two legs in the 2019 League1 Ontario Quarter-Finals.

The two legs of this Quarter-Final tie are:

Saturday August 24 (noon) @ Paramount Fine Foods Centre, Mississauga

Saturday September 7 (8 p.m.) @ L'Amoreaux Sports Centre, Toronto

 (Jonathan Cheng)

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