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Tormented: FC Tucson loses 2nd match to South Georgia side

'Taking a play off' costs local side in rematch, coach says

FC Tucson had its first rematch since joining USL League One in a Friday-night contest with South Georgia Tormenta FC at Kino North Stadium. The rematch ended much like the first face off between the two of them: a 2 - 0 loss. Despite the score, FC Tucson coach Darren Sawatzky, said the match was close.

"It was a very even game. We created a lot of chances, especially in the first half and towards the end of the game," he said. "We didn't finish and we took one play off. It's been the theme of the group."

First-half stats showed Tormenta with 61 percent of possession, mostly due to an FC Tucson squad who sat back and allowed their opponents time on the ball in their own half. Tucson made the most of the possession they had with three solid chances on goal, including a run by Eti Tavares in minute 22. Tavares managed a shot from wide right, forcing Tormenta keeper Pablo Jare down for a clumsy save. Tavares pounced to try a second shot, but Jare smothered the ball.

The half ended in no goals for either team. The second half started much the same, this time with two great solo efforts by FC Tucson's Andrew Wheeler Omiunu and Tavares, both of which ended with them being stripped of the ball by Tormenta defenders before they could take a shot.

A slip up in the FC Tucson back line allowed Lucas Coutinho a look at goal in minute 63. It was one of the few looks his team was allowed but he made the most of it and slipped it past Tucson's Phillip Ejimadu.

The goal spurred an offensive push from FC Tucson. In minute 71, several Tucson attackers bounced the ball off Tormenta's Jare, who saved each shot despite going to ground. In minute 83, Luke Houswirth sent the ball to forward Roy Abergil with what looked to be a sure tie making shot. Jare was not to be beaten, however.

As stoppage time ticked off, the constant attack on Tormenta's goal left a lot of room at the back. Even goalkeeper Ejimadu played close to the half line. Conner Antley, Tormenta's right back, took advantage and ran the ball up field and had an easy shot on the open net. He ran over to the Cactus Pricks, FC Tucson's boisterous supporter group, and taunted them after the goal.

Unfortunately for FC Tucson, they had what would usually be called a solid effort: a defense that allowed few chances and some good chances from their own offense. A slip up here, not enough hunger there allowed the other team to win, said a frustrated Sawatzky.

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"They (Tormenta) really didn't create anything down the middle of the park until we took a play off," he said. "That's something we are going to have to work at. We've done that in each of the games. We've given up a goal that's really on us."

"We are really going to have to solve scoring goals," he added. "We really need to score more."

"We weren't good in that final third," said forward Roy Abergil. "I thought we could have had one goal. We could have created more chances."

"Sometimes it is what it is," he added. "Sometimes it doesn't go your way."

FC Tucson plays their next home match on Tuesday against Lansing Ignite at 7 p.m.

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FC Tucson

FC Tucson’s Devyn Jambga dribbles past a Tormenta FC defender.