Valour FC still have yet to defeat Cavalry FC, as the two sides played out a 0-0 draw at IG Field on a Tuesday night in which neither side could break through to find the net.
Cavalry, finishing up a seven-game road trip, deployed a strong lineup with a front three of Ben Fisk, Anthony Novak, and Sergio Camargo with a matching back three of David Norman Jr., Karifa Yao, and Daan Klomp. Valour, still looking for their first win under Phillip Dos Santos, opted for William Akio as a lone striker with high-profile Brazilian Rafael Galhardo starting just behind, and Jared Ulloa and Brett Levis on the wings.
A of Valour attackers nearly struck immediately, with a good through ball from Galhardo finding Ulloa in the box just a couple of minutes into the game, but Marco Carducci made a phenomenal save to turn him away. Not long after, Ulloa found himself played through again, but lost his footing in the box — perhaps due to contact from Carducci, but referee David Barrie disagreed.
Cavalry settled into the game a little after Valour’s fast, direct start — although the hosts still enjoyed about half of possession. After the first 15 minutes or so, most of the more dangerous opportunities in the first half came from set-pieces, from which neither team could capitalize.
The Cavs made one halftime switch, with Joe Di Chiara coming in to take over for Sergio Camargo. Dos Santos kept things briefly the same for Valour, but he brought in veterans Moses Dyer and Keven Aleman near the hour mark to replace Akio and Daryl Fordyce.
Valour came out of the gates strong in the second half as well, with a couple of exceptional balls into the box from Galhardo very nearly beating Carducci — the second one being stopped thanks to an exceptional diving header by Daan Klomp.
Perhaps the most dangerous chance of the second frame, though, was Cavalry’s: Novak drove to the end line near the 78-minute mark, and he fired a strong pass across to Elliot Simmons right in front of goal, but Valour ‘keeper Jonathan Sirois somehow got across to make the save on the doorstep.
In the end, the match concluded in stalemate — though not for want of trying, with the shots ultimately finishing 21-14 in favour of Cavalry as both sides had their share of opportunities they couldn’t quite finish.
Securing a point with the draw, Cavalry gained ever so slightly on first-place Pacific FC — who now sit three points ahead of the Cavs — but perhaps more importantly they increased their lead over third-place Forge FC to two. Valour remain in sixth, five points back of York United for the final playoff spot.
51′ — Yellow: Jared Ulloa (Valour FC)
65′ — Yellow: David Norman Jr. (Cavalry FC)
72′ — Yellow; Brett Levis (Valour FC)