7/11/2012- July 11 (Bayamón) The Puerto Rico Islanders took all three points from the San Antonio Scorpions at Bayamón Soccer Complex. The Islanders pulled level with the Scorpions at the top of the NASL table with a shared points lead of 28. A first half goal from Nicholas Addlery in the 25th minute proved to be enough for the Islanders on their home soil. This Saturday, July 14th, the Islanders travel to Atlanta to square off against Eric Wynalda and the Atlanta Silverbacks. As always, fans can watch the game at the Islanders' Watch Party in Coladas Fine Puerto Rican Cuisine and Frozen Drink Bar at Verdanza Hotel in Isla Verde, starting at 7:00 p.m.
Delighted Islanders' Manager Adrian Whitbread spoke to Prislandersfc.com after the game: “I think today we showed our true colors as a team. We came out in the first half and possessed the ball well and finished our chance, which was a concern after the FC Edmonton Game. The second half was a real battle. I expected a good team like San Antonio to come out and look for an equalizer, but our players were fantastic tonight”.
It was the home side that controlled possession and created the majority of the quality chances from the start, while the Scorpions looked to counter. In the 16th minute, Islander’s #10, Gregory Richardson, drilled a dangerous cross into the box after good work down the right flank, but target man Nicholas Addlery could only flash a header wide.
The Islanders were disallowed a goal in the 17th minute after defender Anthony Vázquez was judged to have fouled San Antonio keeper Daryl Sattler. It was not a call that went unquestioned, but regardless the score remained 0-0.
The scoring breakthrough for the Islanders came in the 25th minute by way of Addlery. Captain Noah Delgado swung a cross in from the left wing and Addlery was there to bury the open chance with a headed finish. Addlery had been playing a traditional center-forward position effectively prior to the goal and finished this chance with clinical accuracy.
Jonathan Faña found himself in on goal after slipping his defender in the 32nd, but his toe-poked effort couldn’t escape Sattler’s grasp. The San Antonio goalkeeper came into the match leading the NASL with a 0.52 GAA.
As the dust settled, the ensuing free kick was flicked into the net by Puerto Rico defender Jay Needham, but again an Islanders’ goal was disallowed, this time for offsides.
The eventful first half ended with the Islanders leading 1-0 with two goals disallowed.
The visiting Scorpions abandoned their counter attacking playing style and took control of possession in the second half. The game was nearly equalized by an own goal in 51st minute after Esteban Bayona raised havoc in the box, but Islanders’ keeper Richard Martin was equal to the task, as he was for the entire night.
Scorpion’s Brazilian striker Pablo Campos came close with an overhead effort in the 59th but it fell securely into Martin’s gloves.
Martin saved a headed effort at point blank range in the 64th keeping ex-Islander Aaron Pitchkolan off the score sheet.
It was clearly going to take something special from the Scorpions to equalize and San Antonio could not find a way through. Addlery’s team-leading 6th goal was good enough for a 1-0 victory in a battle between two of the top sides in the NASL.