It was Cavalry FC’s day on Saturday.
The Calgary-based outfit was victorious in its inaugural match at home, eventually edging York9 FC 2-1 in a nervy and snowy day at Spruce Meadows.
Calvary started the match in control with a number of chances and stand-out attacking plays, though it didn’t take long for Jordan Brown to break down York9’s door down. The English striker became the first goalscorer in Cavalry’s club history in the 26th minute, scoring with a nodded effort from just a few yards out off a corner kick swung in by Julian Buscher and first assisted by Jay Wheeldon.
The chances continued for Calvary as they headed into the break, enjoying 70% possession and a comfortable 1-0 lead. As the weather turned from cloudy to snowy, however, so did Y9’s fortunes in the second half, with Emilio Estevez, Cyrus Rollocks and Simon Adjei getting into the match at last.
However, in the 78th minute, Dominick Zator rose to smash home a beautiful header for Cavalry’s second goal of the day – and the second from a corner – to give the home team a 2-0 lead.
York9 made one last stab at a comeback late, with Adiej smashing home a well-worked play to make it 2-1. The 83rd-minute strike was just the second shot on target for Y9.
Last chances for York9 were not enough, however, as Cavalry held on to take a win in their club’s inaugural match.
Cavalry will now prepare to host Valour FC on Wednesday (9 p.m. ET/7 p.m. MT, OneSoccer) in another match at Spruce Meadows. York9, meanwhile, will shift their focus to the 2019 Canadian Championship and an away leg against AS Blainville on May 15. Jimmy Brennan’s side will return to CPL competition on May 18 against Pacific FC at Westhills Stadium.
Three key performers
Jordan Brown – Cavalry FC
The first goalscorer in Calvary FC history, Jordan Brown delivered on the hype as a top forward prospect in the CPL. A calm, somewhat uncontested header for the winner was a meaningful award for his work as a striker in the club’s inaugural game, moving the ball well and creating chances on route to winning man of the match honours.
Joel Waterman – Cavalry FC
Cavalry’s ball-playing centre-back looked about a decade his senior on Saturday, with the 23-year-old CPL-USPORTS Draft pick looking comfortable stepping up from the three-man backline. Waterman led his side in touches (94) over the 90 minutes, while also topping the charts in defensive categories of clearances (3) and interceptions (5)
Emilio Estevez – York9 FC
York9 FC’s midfield sparkplug was the driving force for the visitors, moving the ball up and creating space for his side. Estevez impressed replacing Manny Aparicio spot in the side as a creative, attacking midfielder, forcing Marco Carducci to make a tough save in a stand-out second half.