Maybe holding on to that 3-0 lead in the season opener in Calgary would have spoiled us. A win right off the back against last year’s Western Conference champions, with people watching via a stream, would have been great, but would it have felt as good as being there in person to witness TSS Rovers first ever PDL victory?
We’ll leave you to muse upon that. For now, let’s just soak in the moment. It’s taken five games, and they should have already have had two wins under their belt, but Rovers 2-1 win over Calgary Foothills finally sees them with a plus points total!
An early first half goal from Daniel Davidson, was pegged back by Calgary’s Kyle Jones from the penalty spot just before the break. You feared that a depleted TSS team might buckle in the second half under the Foothills pressure. We’d seen that play out in Calgary in the first meeting between the sides.
But full credit to TSS. They fought as a team, led by an inspired Andrew Hicks in goal producing some top class saves. Having tired in the latter stages of their first few matches, Rovers got their energy levels right this time around, saving themselves for a late push and it paid off when Zach Verhoven hit the match winner into the bottom left corner with 13 minutes remaining to send the team, the bench, and Swangard into raptures.
And this time they held on.
AFTN photographer Tom Ewasiuk was there to capture all the action before, during and after the game. 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].
Ready for battle
Your history making TSS Rovers starting XI
Kristian Yli-Hietanen was a nuisance for Calgary in the early stages
In more ways than one!
And it was Yli-Hietanen who stormed forward in the 13th minute, chipping the onrushing Dylan Powley
And sending the ball goalbound
And although Matt King cleared it on the line, Daniel Davidson was in the right place to make sure the ball went in
And Calgary were clearly terrified!
But Davidson was to go off injured, replaced by Zach Verhoven who had a chance to double TSS’ lead within seconds of coming on
But this time Powley thwarted the danger
While at the other end Andrew Hicks was in inspired form, keeping Foothills at bay time and time again with some top class saves
But he could nothing to stop Kyle Jones tucking away his fourth penalty of the season, all of them against TSS, in the 42nd minute to make it 1-1
Sending the Calgary support head over heels (I love these big head things. We need loads at the ‘Caps)
The second half got feisty and tempers flared as the fouls racked up, with 39 in total, 24 of them by Calgary
The Swanguardians were in fine voice cheering on their guys to get the winner
And Hicks was still standing on his head, making nine key saves throughout the match
Then came the breakthrough moment in the 77th minute as Zach Verhoven broke clear to fire the ball across goal, under Powley and into the bottom left hand corner
Which was nearly short lived as the dangerous Dominic Russo went up the other end, lobbed Hicks, and looked set to tie things up before Vaggeli Boucas’ headed it off the goalline
Jubilant scenes on the TSS bench at the final whistle
And in supporters section too
Let that scoreline sink in. TSS Rovers are off and running
You can see all of Tom’s photos from the game HERE and in our full Flickr slideshow below: