York United picked up their first home win of the season, and handed Cavalry their first loss of the 2023 campaign, during a 1-0 victory on Sunday evening at York Lions Stadium.
Winger Clément Bayiha scored his first Canadian Premier League goal in the 22nd minute to secure the win for the Nine Stripes. With the win, York also vaults Cavalry in the table and moves up into third spot.
Making his 100th appearance for Cavalry FC, the first player to do so, goalkeeper Marco Carducci was called upon in the 15th minute as Lassana Faye broke into the box out wide, and fired a low shot that Carducci saved well and then was able to gather in the box.
The hosts, however, got in behind again in the 22nd minute, and this time made their opportunity count. Paris Gee played a long ball from the back that Osaze De Rosario brought down well into the path of Bayiha, who cleverly rounded Carducci in net and kept his composure to open his account for the Nine Stripes. It was the first time this season that Cavalry has allowed the opening goal.
Cavalry looked to quickly respond, and five minutes later Ali Musse played Myer Bevan through to the right of Niko Giantsopoulos’ net, but the York keeper was equal to his strike across goal.
The visitors came incredibly close just before the half, as a rare errant pass by Gee was picked off by Musse in the midfield who quickly slipped the ball to Mikaël Cantave. His shot skipped across the turf and struck the post to the right of Giantsopoulos.
The York goalkeeper was called into action in added time as the Cavs continued to press, looking for an equalizer. Eryk Kobza’s strike from outside the box was parried well by Giantsopoulos. York held on to lead 1-0 at the half.
York were nearly the creator of their own downfall again in the 61st minute, as a pass out of the back was picked off by Cantave, who burst into the box but was quickly closed down by Tass Mourdoukoutas.
Looking to shake things up, Wheeldon Jr. made a triple substitution in the 63rd minute, bringing on Goteh Ntignee, Charlie Trafford and Roberto Alarcón. Trafford nearly instantly made an impact off of a Cavalry set piece, but his looped header landed on top of the net and not in it. A few minutes later the visitors did put the ball in the back of the net, but it was ruled offside.
That was as close as Cavalry would come, and for the first time this season, they were held scoreless. York, nearly added another in stoppage time, but substitute Brian Wright was denied by Carducci. The Nine Stripes would hold on for their first consecutive victories and clean sheets of the 2023 season. It was their third clean sheet of the season, behind only Forge for the league lead in that category.
23′ — Clément Bayiha (York United)
35′ — Yellow: Eryk Kobza (Cavalry FC)
90′ — Yellow: Charlie Trafford (Cavalry FC)
90′ +7 — Yellow: Udoka Chima (Cavalry FC)