Strikers Rally Late to Defeat Defending Champions; Extend Undefeated Streak to three games
By: Orlando Greenwald
Hosting the Islanders from Puerto Rico, the Fort Lauderdale Strikers brought their endless win streak to an end. Even though the Strikers haven’t lost in 7 of their last 8 games, they haven’t seen a win since April 23rd.
The game started off with an early goal by Strikers forward, Abe Thompson in the 11th minute. Paulinho Le Petit was focused and was attacking the goal strong. The early lead was kept during the first half which was very physical.
Ending the first half at 1-0, the Islanders came out strong and much more energized in the second half. Islanders’ midfielder, Nick Addlery scored a rebound goal in the 63rd minute after Strikers goalie, Matt Glaeser barely saved it off his finger tips.
Islanders forward, Jonathan Fana scored from an assist by Nick Addlery in the 66th minute to put Puerto Rico ahead 2-1
With only 10 minutes remaining in the game, and fans known as “Striker Likers” still cheering on the Strikers, Fort Lauderdale put on a comeback in stylish fashion. On a set piece, Cristian Arrieta scored to tie the game at 2-2. Not wanting to settle for another tie, Jean-Phillipe Peguero scored the game winning goal in the 87th minute thanks to a brilliant pass from David Santamaria.
Peguero was removed from the game for two years having knee injuries that caused his retirement, but signed with the Strikers in April and was the hero in Saturday’s huge win.
With the trilling victory, the Strikers have put themselves back in the playoff picture, with plenty of the season still to come.
The Strikers continue their homestand June 11th against the Minnesota Stars which currently are in second place in the North American Soccer League. Fans are urged to come to the games, especially after such a comeback win that was keyed by the passionate “Striker Likers.”
The Fort Lauderdale Strikers extend their unbeaten streak to three games, and seven of the last eight. The Strikers record is now 2-5-2 and the Islanders are 3-2-3.
The Fort Lauderdale Strikers next game is at home against the Minnesota Stars Saturday June 11th at 7:30 p.m.