Toronto FC III entered Sunday's match in third place with 22 points, just a single point behind both Sigma and FC London.
A late free kick goal from Terique Mohammed (87') to win the match 3-2 ensured that TFC III would keep pace with their rivals, and spoiled the day for the visiting Pro Stars FC, who had come back from two early goals to tie the game.
Zakaria Abdi scored two quickfire goals (4', 8') for TFC III, and Pro Stars responded with a set-piece goal through Muhammed Ashim (12') as well as a finish from Anthony Chrysanthou (78'), before Terique Mohammed’s decisive free kick (87’).
A clever chip over the goalkeeper from Abdi after Ryan Robinson's skilful run past two defenders resulted in TFC III's first goal.
It was quickly followed up by another goal after Abdi found space to run in between both Pro Stars centre-backs in the box and finish past the Pro Stars' keeper for the second time in four minutes.
However, Pro Stars halved the deficit just minutes later, as Muhammed Ashim got on the end of a free kick taken near the corner flag.
Anthony Chrysanthou nearly equalized in the 14th minute after earning space for a shot on the edge of the TFC III box, but keeper Brogan Engbers came up with the save.
Engbers was heavily involved for the remainder of the half, stopping another run down the left wing by Chrysanthou as well as coming off his line to clear a dangerous through ball.
Crucially, Engbers denied Ashim in a one v one situation with a top-class reaction save in the 40th minute.
TFC III created some chances of their own, especially through the involvement of winger Kunle Dada-Luke. The game was finely balanced in the first half following the early flurry of goals.
The game remained evenly matched heading into the second half. TFC III had a chance to regain their two-goal lead in the 62nd minute after a clumsy foul on Daniel Bilousov gave the hosts a penalty.
However, ProStars' keeper Aaron Peters dived quickly to his left to deny Bilousov and kept the game alive for the visitors. The play would be stop-and-start for the minutes that followed, as both teams made use of their substitutions.
Anthony Chrystanthou finally found the net for ProStars in the 78th minute, levelling the game at 2-2. TFC III was galvanized by this goal, and Peters had to make several stops to keep the scoreline level.
However, Terique Mohammed’s free kick in the final minutes finally got the better of the Pro Stars keeper and secured all three points for TFC III.
TFC III (8-1-1) keep pace with their opponents at the top of the L1OM table, and will play Woodbridge Strikers next at Vaughan Grove Turf, Woodbridge on August 7 (9:00 p.m.).
Meanwhile, ProStars FC (1-6-4) will host Sigma FC on August 18 (8:30 p.m.) at Victoria Park, Brampton.