New England Soccer Today

LUSA: E.P. Equalizes Late vs. Cranston

(Photo: Brian O'Connell)

(Photo: Brian O’Connell)

FALL RIVER, Mass. – Miguel Fortes equalized in the waning moments to help East Providence salvage a 4-4 draw against Cranston PC at Billy Gonsalves Field on Sunday.

Fortes scored in the 90th minute, and also tallied in the 40th minute. Armando Gomes opened the account in the 22nd minute, while Cory Lopes joined the scoring parade in the 68th minute. Cranston ran with their opponents from start to finish as Fabrice Dogbey kickstarted the scoring for his club in the 34th minute, while Scott Douglas collected a pair of goals in the 38th and 76th minutes. Casey Banks capped the scoring for Cranston in the 79th minute.

With the draw, each club earned its first point of the season, but both remained at the bottom of the table at the end of the day.

East Providence wasted no time announcing its intentions, and showed good attacking instincts by using Lopes and Gomes to spear the offense.

After a couple of tempting chances fell by the wayside, Gomes broke through midway through the first half when he ran down a ball from Andres Perdomo and went into the final third undisturbed before slotting it past Brian Monteiro.

Cranston responded less than 10 minutes later when Dogbey raced toward the near post and ripped a shot that Jordan Verissimo got a piece of before it trickled into the net to level the score.

There was absolutely nothing Verissimo could do four minutes later, though, when Douglas volleyed it toward the near post to put his club on top with the interval approaching.

Any ideas Cranston had at taking the lead with them into the break evaporated when Lopes crossed it toward Gomes, who headed it right in front of Fortes. With a clear shot ahead, Fortes didn’t hesitate to pull the trigger and placed his shot just under the bar in the 40th minute.

The offense-first frame of mind resume in the second half, where both clubs looked to reclaim the advantage. But East Providence let a bevy of chances slip through their fingers, with a two-minute sequence that saw them fire no fewer than four shots that all fell right to Monteiro each time.

They finally grabbed the goal that eluded them when Dave DeMello advanced into the the attacking third and fed it forward to Lopes, who blasted it through in the 68th minute.

To its credit, Cranston didn’t quit, and proved it in the 75th minute when Dogbey sprinted into the area, but was forced off the ball by Fortes inside the 18. A penalty was awarded to Cranston, and Douglas hit it true to put the clubs back on level terms.

It didn’t stay level for long when Banks fought through two defenders and went alone on Verissimo before burying it in the 79th minute.

But East Providence would have the last say when Lopes found Fortes near the box, where the center back made arrangements with the back of the net to help his club avoid a third-straight defeat.

East Providence returns to action at 7pm on Jun. 8 when they face reigning league champion Fall River Sports at Billy Gonsalves Field. Cranston resumes its campaign at 11am on Jun. 9, when they’ll host Benfica Washington Park at Volunteers Field.

Leave a Reply