Durham United F.C. continue their early season unbeaten streak, and go top of the League1 Ontario table, after a 0-0 draw with a determined and well-organized Kingston Clippers side.
"Right from the opening whistle we had full intensity and created four scoring opportunities," said Kingston head coach Christian Hoefler. "This momentum for us picked up again in the last ten minutes of the first half and carried forward into the entire second half. DUFC would create an aggressive attack and then we would counter with our own. It was an entertaining match to witness."
DUFC Head Coach, Sanford Carabin, concurred that the visitors came out of the gate flying but felt it was beneficial to his side.
"It was quite important when they hit the crossbar in the first 15 seconds of the game. That woke us up straight away," said Carabin. "That's what we needed to get switched on and, credit to the boys, they responded and maintained a very focused approach throughout the match."
Hoefler chose two of his defensive players as match MVPs.
"[Max Materne, the GK] earned his second start this season and came up with another solid performance," said Hoefler. "Each opportunity that DUFC had, Max came up large to prevent the opposition from scoring."
"[Fullback] Adrian Rochford played his first League 1 Ontario match and immediately made an explosive impact to our side," added Hoefler. "Within the first minute of play, Adrian had made an exquisite attack down the left flank, cut inside and unleashed a canon strike that rattled off the crossbar and left the home fans in awe. Adrian provided countless attacks up the left side of the pitch and remained determined to ensure his defensive responsibilities were met."
Hoefler picked out Durham United's Forward Le Rohne Young and Goalkeeper Ben Cowman as the home sides' most valuable players.
Carabin agreed that Materne was the star of the show for Clippers but chose to single out his Central Defence pairing, Le Shaun Young and Joe Zuppo, as being key to his side's success on the evening.
"They dealt well with Kingston's style of attack and were terrific defending set pieces all evening," noted the DUFC gaffer.
Despite having to share the points, Hoefler indicated that he was satisfied with the result.
"This performance felt very productive and you can sense that more points are on their way for our side," said Hoefler. "Although we craved the full three points, this draw marked the first points away from Kingston in club history...A few minor tweaks to our attack and I am certain a positive result will follow."
Carabin indicated that there is still some work to be done in terms of how his team goes forward.
"Kingston was very organized defensively and we didn't show enough patience...we forced things too much," lamented Carabin. "Over the next week, we will address the attacking phase, from build up to penetration and then finishing."
Kingston Clippers will have to rest and regroup quickly as they play host to Sanjaxx Lions on Sunday May 17 at Queens University's Tindall Field. Kickoff time is 2pm.
Durham hit the road to Woodbridge, playing the Strikers at Vaughan Grove on Sunday May 24, 7 pm.