Lynx Futile Effort
Rhinos shake down young Toronto team.
by David Bailey
Four hundred and twenty-eight minutes of Toronto Lynx (1-2) offensive futility finally came to an end but it wasn't nearly enough as the hometown Rochester Raging Rhinos (2-1) overpowered the inexperienced Toronto side by a score of 3-1 in front of 10,471 at Frontier Field.

First half markers by Jimmy Glenn, Mauro Biello and an own goal by Lynx defender Joe Mattachione virtually assured the Rhinos of victory over a Toronto squad that had yet to score a single goal (outside of tie-breaking shootouts) in three 1999 matches.  Lynx Brazilian midfielder Gaucho scored on an 83rd minute penalty but it was far too little, far too late.

Only two minutes into the match, Rhinos midfielder Yari Allnut and Lynx midfielder Brian Ashton went after a cross in the Toronto box.  Allnut brought his elbow up cutting Ashton near the right eye.  Surprisingly, referee Paul Tamborino gave Allnut only a yellow card as Ashton missed the next four minutes of the match while being patched up.  After the match Ashton said "I don't know why he gave him a yellow card.  When you elbow somebody in the head, it's an automatic ejection.  It could have changed the whole game right there."

Lynx head coach Peter Pinnizotto said, "That was rubbish.  We've received red cards on the road for less dangerous play.  The referee saw it, he was five yards (from the incident).  It should have been a red card".

Former Montreal Impact Mauro Biello opened the scoring in the 16th minute.  He chested down a short pass from Alnutt and fired a high curling rocket into the upper left corner of the goal leaving Lynx keeper Jim Larkin helpless.  Larkin could only say "It was a class finish, a great goal". 

Lynx captain Kevin Holness, playing in only his first match since the indoor Edmonton Drillers were knocked out of the NPSL play-offs, accepted some of the blame for allowing Biello the time and space he needed to score.  "Mentally my mind wasn't in the first 20 minutes" said Holness.   "It cost us and because of that, our backs were against the wall". 

Disaster struck in the 30th minute when Rhinos defender Mike Kirmse sent one of his unique sommersaulting "flip" throw-ins 40 yards into the Lynx box.  Defender Joe Mattacchione went up to try and knock down the long ball but succeeded only in deflecting it past a shocked Larkin. 

"After watching it on the replay board, I felt I should have come for the throw in" said the Lynx keeper.  "(The own goal) really killed us" said Pinnizotto.

The Rhinos would score their third goal in the 39th minute when Lenin Steenkamp fired a hard cross from the right side directly to the head of Jimmy Glenn who put the ball just inside the right post. 

Larkin said "We were back on our heels a bit and they kept coming.  It's going to happen against a good team like Rochester".

The second half was fairly uneventful until the 82nd minute when Steenkamp brought down Kevin de Surpa inside the box.  Gaucho gave Rhinos and Canadian National team keeper Pat Onstad no chance on the penalty and the Lynx had their ellusive first goal.

While obviously unhappy, Pinnizotto was philosphical about the loss. "In the first half we gave them too much space and they took advantage of our mistakes.  When you play against an experienced team like they have, you're going to pay for it.  I thought we showed a lot of positive signs in the second half.  We adjusted and started to play better but it was too late.  I think we are going to regroup and win some games."

Rhinos head coach Pat Ercoli sympathized with the plight of the young Lynx team, "They have a young team.  They're searching for some unity and leadership I'm sure.  We put a little more pressure on them.  They had three guys at the back and when we applied pressure, we were forcing errors."

The Lynx play their Varsity Stadium home opener on Sunday, May 30th against the Jacksonville Cyclones.  Kickoff on "Parade of Champions Day" is 6:00pm. 

Other notes:  Brazilian striker Jefferson has been released. ..... The Lynx were missing five starters - Edu (family illness in Brazil), Milan Kojic (red card suspension), Ricardo Munguia, (red card suspension), Edgar Bartolomeo and Tony Precci (work permits). ..... Receiving minor injuries in the match were Chris Pozniak (back) and Kevin de Serpa (knee).  Both are expected to be fine for the next match on May 30th. ..... Rochester will play three exhibition matches versus MLS opposition - Kansas City Wizards (May 31) - New York / New Jersey MetroStars (June 16) - Columbus Crew (July 20). ..... Rochester head coach Pat Ercoli is a native of Toronto and played for the old NASL Rochester Lancers from 1978 to 1980.

Rochester Raging Rhinos (3) 3, Toronto (0) 1
: Mauro Biello (16) Joe Mattacchione-OG (30)
Jimmy Glenn (39) for Rochester - Gaucho (83) for Toronto
Attendance: 10,471
Referee: Paul Tamborino
Caution: Yari Allnut (2), Doug Millar (90) for Rochester

Rochester Raging Rhinos: Onstad - Restrepo (Razala, 45), Demmin, Hardy, Kirmse (Mercik, 76), - Daligcon (Sedgewick, 69), Steenkamp, Allnutt (Miller, 54), Biello, - Glenn, Tilley - Coach: Pat Ercoli
Subs Not Used:  Domm, Thompson

Toronto Lynx: Jim Larkin - Reda, Serious, Mattacchione, Ryta (Black, 45), Ashton, Guacho, Holness, DiPlacido (de Serpa, 36), Buzali, Pozniak (Arghittu, 69)
Subs Not Used: Zagar, Coach: Peter Pinizzotto

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