Bayamón, PR (September 7, 2011) - With most of the starting players resting from the CONCACAF World Cup Qualifiers, the Puerto Rico Islanders managed a 1-1 tie with Montreal Impact at Juan Ramon Loubriel Stadium. With this draw, the Islanders maintain their home undefeated streak and clinch a first round playoff bye. The Orange Troop will play its last two games at home against Tampa Bay and Carolina Railhawks, who are currently in first place. This Saturday, September 10th, the Islanders will face FC Tampa Bay. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.
Montreal Impact, which will play in the Major League Soccer (MLS) next season, started the game looking to score a goal by air. However, Ray Burse cleared the cross with his fist. The Montreal Impact continued their offensive pressure after an error by the defense, but the forward Miguel Montaño from Montreal did not take advantage of the opportunity.
In the 26th minute, the Orange Troop almost took the lead over Montreal with a spectacular play by Matt Bouraee. After a corner, Osei Telesford headed a shot towards the center of the box where Bouraee, with an acrobatic bicycle kick sent the ball over the bar.
Moments later, Islander’s forward, Yakiel Pérez, won a ball at the end line and cut towards the goal, but the powerful shot fell right into the hands of the Montreal goalkeeper Evan Bush.
Towards the end of the first half, both teams had good opportunities to go into half time with a goal lead. First, the Colombian forward, Montaño, lost an opportunity with a header that deflected wide after a counterattack. Pérez also had a chance to score a goal but his shot when right into Bush’s hands.
Starting the second half, Pérez broke the Impact defense and found himself one on one with the Montreal goalkeeper. But, once again, Bush won the battle against the Cuban forward and maintained the score in tie at zero.
Burse also had to win his battle against Impact forward Montaño saving a shot towards the bottom corner of the frame.
In the 89th minute, Ryan Pore took advantage of a counterattack that left the Puerto Rican defense badly positioned benefiting the Impact. Once again, Puerto Rico responded well by saving a victory from Montreal at the ‘Islandera’.
Jonathan Faña, lead scorer of the Orange Troop, was pushed over inside the box causing a penalty kick for the Islanders. Faña pacifically directed the ball towards the right hand of the frame which gave the Islanders a 1-1 tie that clinches the spot for the defensive champions of the second division at the playoffs this season.