Boston Victory left it late to win the first competitive game in club history with a last-gasp 2-1 success away to CFC Azul in Connecticut thanks to two dramatic goals scored inside the final three minutes.
After a scoreless first half coach Sergio Taborda’s Quincy-based Boston team fell behind to a strike by former New England Revolution forward Ryan Kinne 12 minutes after the break. But the Victory stormed back as the clock ticked down to come home with all three Premier Development League points.
Defender Pat Hamilton carved out a piece of Boston soccer history for himself with the club’s first competitive and equalizing goal in the 88th minute then in the final minute, Brazilian striker Lucas Pessanha struck to seal victory.
“It is the energy and the never quit spirit that took us over the finish line,” said a delighted Victory coach Taborda. “We played well and with passion. Naturally we are excited by our first win.”
League standings mean little after one game, but Boston Victory will open its home schedule against Worcester Hydra at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Quincy next Saturday, May 12 at 7pm on top of the PDL Northeast Division on goals scored. The Hydra suffered an opening night 1-0 defeat to Seacoast United.
Former New England Revolution pair Andrew Sousa of the Victory and CFC Azul’s Ryan Kinne each wore the captain’s armband for the clash that produced few scoring chances in the first half. The first clear-cut opening fell to the home team’s Jesse Menzies but he blazed his shot wide and then Kinne had an appeal for a penalty waved away in the 17th minute.
Azul’s Steve Covino troubled Victory keeper Jordan Bar with the half’s only shot on goal as Boston was out-shot four to two. Bar was again called into action to keep out a Paul Templeton effort after the break.
In an attempt to create openings of their own, Boston made a triple substitution with only ten minutes played in the second half, as the Brazilian midfield pair of Bruno Torres and Matheus Assaf were introduced along with Cape Verdean international striker Zico Veiga.
But two minutes later home skipper Kinne headed home a perfect Sony Narro cross and CFC Azul deservedly led 1-0.
The Victory looked to be heading for a defeat until the 88th minute when with Boston’s first truly serious assault on goal defender Hamilton produced the equalizer.
Boston stunned the home crowd and caused the traveling Victory Sixth Brigade fans to celebrate with flares burning on the terraces when Brazilian Pessanha fired home on the end of a cross to dramatically steal all three points in the 90th minute.
Team: Bar, Hamilton, Dumbaya, Campbell, Resendes, Jiminez, Silva, Vieira, Sousa, Monteiro, Pessanha.