HAMILTON THUNDER RELENTLESS WITH 4-0 HOME VICTORY
Hamilton Thunder sent out a strong message that their bid for CPSL championship honours would be relentless with an emphatic 4-0 victory over Eastern Conference contenders Vaughan Shooters at Brian Timmis Stadium in Hamilton Thursday night.
On Wednesday night, Metro Lions shutout St. Catharines Wolves 2-0 at Club Roma, St. Catharines, a result that produced an even tighter race at the top of the Eastern Conference standings, and on Tuesday night, Toronto Croatia kept their playoff hopes very much alive with a 3-1 victory over North York Astros at The Soccer Centre in Vaughan, thanks to two late goals by forward Leo Laurito.
Hamilton, strengthened by the signing of Charles Gbeke just before the September 1 roster freeze, took the lead at the 32nd mark when Gbeke scored off a corner kick for a 1-0 score at the break.
Hamilton forward Sasa Milaimovic made it 2-0 at 76 minutes, former Supra striker Michael Diluca took a pass from Gbeke to score and make it 3-0 at 81 minutes.Two minutes later, Courtney Dennis rounded out the scoring for a 4-0 final. It was Diluca's 10th goal of the season.
The win gave Thunder a commanding 5-point lead in the Western Conference with a 9-3-5 WLT record for 32 points with three games remaining (Toronto Croatia, Metro Lions and St. Catharines Wolves).
Vaughan Shooters are at 10-4-4 for 34 points, three behind Toronto Supra and just two points ahead of Metro Lions. Shooters have just two regular league games remaining (North York Astros and Border Stars.)
In Wednesday's game at St. Catharines, Maxim Dorneval opened the scoring at the 6th minute mark, his ninth of the season in a game more than 45 minutes late starting due to bus problems en route to St. Catharines with the Metro Lions' team.
Kareem Reynolds made it 2-0 at 65 minutes for the final score, which improved Metro Lions to 9-2-5 WLT for 32 points to close the gap to two points behind Vaughan Shooters and five points behind Toronto Supra at the top of the Eastern Conference.
St. Catharines have a 3-10-5 record for 14 points at the foot of the Western Conference.
Toronto Croatia opened the scoring just before half-time when midfielder Zvjezdan Kresic scored from a free kick just outside the penalty box to beat Astros� goalkeeper Peyman Beheshtipaur for 1-0 at the break.
North York Astros leading goalscorer Daniel Jaroch tied the game 1-1 at the 64th minute with a strike to the right of Croatia goalkeeper George Azcurra, it was Jaroch�s eighth of the season, but Toronto Croatia went ahead 11 minutes later on Leo Laurito�s first goal when he picked up a long cross from the right to shoot past Beheshtipaur.
Laurito�s second of the night came at the 85th minute mark for a 3-1 final score.
The win vaulted Toronto Croatia into third place with a 7-7-3 WLT record for 24 points, eight behind Western Conference leaders Hamilton Thunder and three points behind second place Border Stars.
North York Astros remain in fourth place in the east with a 3-10-4 record for 13 points�both Astros and Croatia have three regular league games remaining.