A 1-1 draw for Valour FC against Cavalry may have rolled the home team onto a ninth straight match without a win, though this result certainly didn’t feel like anything other than a positive one for Rob Gale’s side.
Marco Bustos’ 93rd-minute penalty gave Valour FC a precious point against one of the league’s top dogs, and while a win continued to elude this side, it’s Valour who will feel like the winners of this particular draw, handing Cavalry their first non-winning result of the Fall campaign.
A back and forth first half saw plenty of early chances carved out for both sides, with Dylan Sacramento getting the party started just three minutes in. But, a 42nd minute break by Cavalry bore fruit first, as Oliver Minatel broke through the Valour backline courtesy of a through pass by Sergio Camargo. The Brazilian striker was clean on the breakaway, slipping the ball past goalkeeper Tyson Farago to give his side a 1-0 lead right before the half-time whistle.
Valour continued to pressure Cavalry in the second half, with Sacramento coming oh so close with a hit post just after the hour mark. New striker Michele Paolucci made his debut in the second half, but couldn’t find a good look at goal. Cavalry’s backline held firm over 90 minutes, but defender Nathan Mavila conceded a penalty with a tug down in added time, giving Bustos a chance at grabbing a point from the spot – which he did, successfully.
Valour returns to IG Field on July 31 for another CPL tilt, this time hosting Pacific FC (7:00 p.m. MT/8:00 p.m. ET, available on OneSoccer). Meanwhile, Cavalry were meant to host Forge on July 30, but had this particular match postponed due to Forge’s CONCACAF League match on Aug. 1 – further details regarding Cavalry’s next match will be announced in the coming days.
41′ – Oliver Minatel (Cavalry FC)
93′ – Marco Bustos (Valour FC)
45+′ Yellow – Skylar Thomas (Valour FC)
84′ Yellow – Michele Paolucci (Valour FC)
91′ Yellow – Raphael Ohin (Valour FC)
93′ Yellow – Nathan Mavila (Cavalry FC)
Three Key Performers
Dylan Sacramento (Valour FC)
An early chance set the tone for Sacramento’s match, with an effort just after the hour mark hitting the post in agonizing fashion, keeping Sacramento off the scoresheet, perhaps undeservedly. Sacramento’s work rate and team-leading four shots were bright spots in an otherwise toothless attack.
Niko Giantsopoulos (Cavalry FC)
Cavalry’s second ‘keeper made a number of saves, big and small, and looked comfortable throughout the 90 minutes as he preserved a clean sheet. And, while he conceded a penalty late, you can hardly fault him, either.
Marco Bustos (Valour FC)
Relatively consistent during his time on the field, but when the big moment calls, heroes are born only when they rise to the challenge, and Bustos certainly met his calling, scoring his penalty and giving his team a precious point against a league giant.