A two goal deficit to overcome. No problem for the champs. Although it was a nervy ending after a strong start.
Those two goals were erased by the 20th minute mark and when Octavio Rivero hit what proved to be the winner seven minutes into the second half, it rounded off an excellent comeback win for the ‘Caps.
An away goal would have put the Fury through and the Whitecaps seemed caught in two minds as to whether to attack and push for the fourth or sit back and defend. It led to some heart in the mouth stuff for the closing moments. Carl Robinson said afterwards, it probably gave him some more grey hairs, but the ‘Caps held on and advance to meet Toronto in the final in two weeks time, as they look to defend their Voyageurs Cup.
It was a heartbreaking end to a great Cup run for Ottawa. They deserve a lot of credit and hopefully their gutsy performances will spur them on to NASL Championship glory.
AFTN photographer Tom Ewasiuk was there to capture all the action before, during and after the Monarchs game and here’s his “Story In Pictures”, with a full Flickr slideshow at the end.[Also check out Tom’s website www.residualimagephotography.com for more of his photos and work].
Just over a minute in, Nicolas Mezquida streaks into the box
And is sent crashing to the ground by Rafael Alves. Penalty Whitecaps!
Which Pedro Morales coolly dispatches. One goal in it now. Game on!
Cristian Techera almost makes it two moments later when he’s played in off a quick free kick, but Romuald Peiser comes up big
Paolo Tornaghi comes up big himself soon after to tip an Ottawa effort over the bar
Jonny Steele’s beard is no match for Alphonso Davies
After Peiser comes up with two big saves, the ‘Caps keep pressing and Pedro Morales sends a ball to Octavio Rivero at the back post
And the Uruguayan heads the ball back to his compatriot Nicolas Mezquida who heads home Vancouver’s second to tie the game up on aggregate
An away goal would be a killer for the ‘Caps but nothing was getting past Paolo Tornaghi
As the half winds down, Alphonso Davies gets the ball on the left and leaves Lance Rozenboom on his ass
Before cracking a shot off the right post
Then Octavio Rivero curls an effort wide as the ‘Caps look for the go ahead goal
The second half starts in the same vein, with Cristian Techera denied by Peiser
Then seven minutes into the half Octavio Rivero heads into the box
And hits a beauty past Peiser into the bottom left corner to put Vancouver up on the night and on aggregate
Take that Fury!
Cristian Techera has another close call
A huge ovation for Alphonso Davies
With no more goals, the ‘Caps go through and the fans celebrate in style
You can see all of Tom’s photos from the game HERE and in our full Flickr slideshow below: