From Canada Kicks site

Lynx Lose to Long Island
Rough Riders clinch first place.
David Bailey, Staff Writer

The Toronto Lynx, playing in their final home game of the 2000 regular season, were defeated by the A-League's Northeast Division leading Long Island Rough Riders by a score of 1 nil in front of 2,602 on a steamy Friday night at Varsity Stadium.

The Lynx were the first to threaten when in the 12th minute, Marcello Vincello sent a 30 yard pass up the left wing to a breaking Francisco Dos Santos.  The Brazilian curled a 20 yard shot past the keeper but just wide of the far post.

The Rough Riders took the lead in the 23rd minute on a superb individual effort by Edson Buddle.   The Long Island striker took control of the ball in the corner of the Lynx crease but looked to be well covered by defender Adrian Serioux.  Somehow, with a fine display of ball control, Buddle juggled the ball off his knee to his head before slotting the ball past a
shocked Carmine Isacco.

The Lynx goaltender commented, "I relaxed as I thought Adrian was going to clear it and (Buddle) took a toe poke and it caught me flat footed." 

Coach Pinizzotto said, "Adrian had the chance to clear the ball (but) missed it.  I don't know what he was trying to do.  It's one of those things.  It was one mistake but you pay when you play good teams."

The Lynx came close to equalizing in the 37th minute when Milan Kojic got on the end of well placed corner from Nebojsa Vignevic but the subsequent header flew just over the bar. 

Long Island came inches away from doubling the score line in the 45th minute but Chris Pozniak was able to clear Joe Ragusa's shot off the goal line.

The Lynx threatened the Rough Riders goal throughout the second half but good opportunities by Barolomeau, Kojic, Dos Santos and Arango could not be converted.

Having already qualified for the play-offs, coach Pinizzotto decided to sit some of his starters in order to give the substitutes a chance to show what they could do and they impressed.  He commented "The players weren't under
the pressure of having to win.  They were loose."  The Lynx appeared to achieve a much more wing oriented, fluid style of play with Pozniak and Bartolomeau starting.  Pinizzotto explained, "Chris and Edgar give us a little bit more speed and they were playing more into space.  Whenever (Nik
Vignjevic or Lloyd Barker) play, they keep more possession of the ball but don't penetrate as much."

Also playing well was the maligned mid-fielder Nebojsa Vignjevic. Pinizzotto was very happy with the play of Nicola Vignjevic's older brother, "He has all kinds of skill, maybe not the pace but he has the experience.  When he has possession of the ball, he looks very good.  That's his game". 

Despite the loss, Isacco thought the team played well.  "A lot of the guys had a lot to prove and I think (the team) proved that we can play with anyone in this league.  (Long Island) are a first place team.  They're going to challenge for a championship and by the looks of it, we are too".

Pinizzotto concurred, "Overall, we have a team that can compete against anybody.  Whoever meets us in the play-offs is not going to have an easy task".

Notes:  The Rough Riders locked up first place in the Northeast Division with today's victory ..... Prior to the match, the Lynx handed out their team awards.  The winners were Lloyd Barker (Public Relations), Brian Ashton (Fan Favourite), Adrian Serious (Defensive Player), Francisco Dos Santos (Offensive Player) and Theo Zagar (Most Valuable Player) ..... Pinball Clemons, Dick Howard and Gerry Dobson were on hand to present the awards .....  Clemons was greeted with a huge roar of tribute when he was introduced, probably the loudest crowd noise heard at a Lynx match this season ..... the Lynx complete their season on the road vs. Atlanta on Labour Day ..... their play-off game, against an opponent yet to be determined, will take place next weekend on the road ..... the atmosphere at Lynx matches has improved dramatically over the past month since management decided to eliminate canned music during play in favour of allowing the crowd to be heard.  In the past, the music broadcast through the stadium p.a. system usually drowned out the cheers, chants and songs of the spectators .....

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