Forge FC have booked a date with redemption as they advance to face CF Montréal in the Canadian Championship quarterfinals after a 2-0 win over PLSQ champs CS Mont-Royal Outremont.
Terran Campbell had the game’s opening goal, while substitute Woobens Pacius, on his birthday no less, sealed the result for Forge in extra time.
Despite Forge having the vast majority of early possession, it was Mont-Royal who had the first real chance of the match. Striker Mouad Ouzane did well to dribble past Alex Achinioti-Jönsson and find teammate Maxime Oliveri, whose low-driven shot was caught and held by a diving Triston Henry.
Forge came close to opening the scoring in the 24th minute when Chris Nanco cut down the right flank and crossed into Terran Campbell. The Forge striker, however, saw his shot go wide.
Playing as the number 1o in a new-look Forge formation, Tristan Borges then showed off his quality, slaloming down the right flank. His cross, however, was deflected behind by Mont-Royal keeper Gabard Fénélon.
A former Haitian international, Fénélon had a couple of adventures in the first half, playing aggressively as Forge tried to get in behind on a few occasions. He spent several minutes on the pitch after a collision with Emery Welshman. A later confrontation between those two players resulted in one of seven yellow cards handed out in a chippy first half.
Slowly but surely over the course of the half, Forge found more and more joy, especially down the Mont-Royal flanks. In the 34th minute, that finally paid off as Ashtone Morgan’s delivery found the head of Campbell whose guided header nestled into the bottom right corner.
Morgan then nearly found the back of the net himself in the 41st minute, when Nanco’s cross found him at the back post. His shot was well saved by Fénélon. The match went into the half 1-0 for Forge.
Campbell nearly added another in the 54th minute, after combining well with Welshmen. But his rushed shot was once again saved.
The second half took on a stop/start tempo, as Mont-Royal frustrated Forge with a resilient defensive effort. Forge was often guilty of misplaced passes in the final third, wasting promising moments.
As Forge manager Bobby Smyrniotis mentioned pre-match, games like this can come down to the smallest detail, and Mont-Royal did generate once decent opportunity off of the training pitch on a corner.
In injury time, a pair of substitutes combined to seal the result for Forge. David Choinière’s cross found Pacius alone in the box, and the young Forge striker made no mistake, giving Forge a 2-0 win.