The HFX Wanderers got back to winning ways on Saturday, riding a late Akeem Garcia penalty to a 1-0 win over York United in an opening day rematch, snapping a three-game winless run in the process.
The Wanderers nearly got off to a dream start to this game quite early on, as Akeem Garcia did well to unlock a running Mour Samb in the 5th minute, but Samb’s shot would slash into the wrong side of the side netting from an awkward angle.
Shortly after, in the 13th minute, York then fashioned a good chance of their own, as Lowell Wright managed to tee up Lisandro Cabrera with a great cross into the box, but the York forward’s diving header was sent just wide of the mark from in-close.
Then, in the 17th minute, a ball would settle nicely for Cédric Toussaint at the edge of HFX’s box, giving the York midfielder a chance to set his sights on goal, but his shot would end up sailing well over the mark. Less than two minutes later, a similar scenario would occur to his York teammate, Mateo Hernández, as well, who’d also send his shot well over despite having a clear look at goal from outside of the box.
After that, however, the game would quiet down for a bit, settling into a bit of a lull. As a result, the next chance didn’t come until the 35th minute, when Eduardo Jesus stepped up to take a long free-kick for York, making great contact on a strike, just sending it inches over the crossbar.
Continuing their push to grab a goal before half, York would manage to keep knocking on the Wanderers’ door, as they looked to break it down. And they’d nearly do that in the 38th minute, as Hernadez set up Cabrera with a great low cross into the box, one that Cabrera managed to control in stride, before slashing a left-footed shot just wide of the goal.
On the other side of half time, the Wanderers would come out strong, as Sam Salter managed to wiggle free at the back post on a deep free-kick, meeting a ball in stride, but his shot would just graze off the outside of the post and wide of the target. A few minutes later, Eriks Santos also came close off of a wide set piece, as he’d make full contact with a great ball, only narrowly sending his header over the bar from close range.
At the other end, Osaze De Rosario then came alive in the 62nd minute for York, finding a nice pocket of space before unleashing a strike, one that he’d make full contact with despite sending it wide of the mark.
Soon after, however, that’d lead to the Wanderers finally finding their breakthrough in the 71st minute.
After a great run into the box by Santos, he’d be taken out by Jordan Wilson, winning a penalty in the process. From there, Garcia stepped up to take it, and he showed no hesitation on his attempt, slowly rolling a shot into the low corner for a well-taken penalty, giving his team the lead.
Despite that blow, York would continue to push, however. As a result, they nearly came close to scoring in the 76th minute, as a ball sat nicely for Toussaint after a corner, and he got full contact behind the strike, only finding his shot blocked by a Wanderers defender.
Other than that, though, it’d be too little, too late from York, who’d be unable to turn their late push into any goals or chances, allowing the Wanderers to pick up their second 1-0 victory over them this season.
71′ – Akeem Garcia (HFX Wanderers) – PK
32′ — Yellow: Colin Gander (HFX Wanderers)
45′ — Yellow: Akeem Garcia (HFX Wanderers)
85′ — Yellow: Aidan Daniels (HFX Wanderers)