Photo: Martin Bazyl
North Toronto Nitros went to Toronto Skillz's home ground of Birchmount Stadium - a week after Woodbridge Strikers were nearly upset by the 2016 men's division debutants TSkillz - and claimed all three points and a clean sheet with a 3-0 final.
"I think coming off last week we were on a high, and maybe we carried it a bit much into this game," said Toronto Skillz head coach, Leslie "Tiger" Fitzpatrick.
"That result probably brings us back down to earth a little bit."
Photo: Martin Bazyl
Nikolay Saveliev (32') got the visitors off to a dream start, and the Nitros demonstrated adept possession play to utilize the full width and depth of the pitch and keep a young TSkillz team defensively chasing the play.
"Credit to North Toronto, they came out and dominated the first half. They were first to every ball and won every challenge," said Fitzpatrick.
"When that happens, you're going to struggle. We need to get back to training field and work on the things we need to improve."
Niba MacDonald (Photo: Martin Bazyl)
Mounting pressure forced a penalty in the final half hour, buried by North Toronto's Niba MacDonald (65').
"We came here to play our game and just tried to apply the plan. I think the guys did very well, and the result says it for itself," said North Toronto head coach, Hermann Kingue.
With only fifteen minutes left, Anthony Sousa (75') added his second in two weeks and gave the green and black clad visitors a comfortable three goal pad over the home side, which would prove enough to earn the result.
"In a technical sense we were as good as anything out there, but sometimes it comes down to desire and who wants it more," said Fitzpatrick. "The quality of our individuals in our group will know that, and they will return stronger."
"I think the tactics worked perfectly for us today," said North Toronto captain Carl D'Abreo.
"It was amazing to take it from the training field and see it work on the field, to stick in three goals and keep the clean sheet. We're happy to see that we did it, and want to keep this momentum moving forward."
Carl D'Abreo (Photo: Martin Bazyl)